CBA Letter to SBA & Treasury regarding PPP Guidance

April 23, 2020

 

William Manger

Associate Administrator

U.S. Small Business Administration

409 3rd Street, SW

Washington, D.C. 20416

 

Michael Faulkender

Assistant Secretary for Economic Policy

United States Department of the Treasury

Treasury Building

1500 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW

Washington, D.C. 20220

 

Re: Implementing the Paycheck Protection Program

 

Dear Associate Administrator Manger and Assistant Secretary Faulkender,

 

I write, on behalf of the Consumer Bankers Association (CBA), to express the immediate need to correct deficiencies in the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) which are detrimentally impacting applications of tens of thousands of small businesses.  The PPP has been welcomed by small businesses across the country and considered a lifeline for the millions of men and women who work at them. These businesses and their employees now face immediate economic threats related to the COVID-19 pandemic and implementation of the program must not be interrupted.  Bankers across the country have worked tirelessly to implement the new program having been inundated by high volumes of loan applications from small business owners. Our members continue to do everything humanly possible to support U.S. small businesses and provide them assistance through the PPP established in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.[1]  

 

We cannot emphasize enough the need for your respective agencies to immediately address critical issues impeding lenders’ abilities to fund loans for borrowers in need.  For example, for over a week CBA has asked for guidance on the 10-day funding clarification.  Specifically:

 

  • What if banks cannot adhere to the 10 days due to the backlog of loans that are overwhelming both lender and SBA systems? 
  • Will there be good faith effort discretion? 
  • What if a borrower does not want to close or will not sign the loan docs within 10 days? 

 

To date, we have heard nothing from the Treasury or SBA on this issue.  Without clarification, having some of the approved PPP loans approaching/passing 10 days, many lenders are considering whether to fund these loans.  If funded and the loans are subsequently determined to be neither forgivable or guaranteed, lenders run a safety and soundness risk and a customer risk.  If lenders do not fund, they face great customer and reputational risk.

 

Immediate guidance on this, and other issues, is desperately needed. 

 

Other issues include:

  • Clarity on how lenders are to handle a client's loan request that was approved by SBA, based on the incorrect amount submitted by the client.
  • Clarity on paying "agents" that the borrower obtained.
  • Clarity on the reimbursement fee process.
  • Clarity on SBA debt relief payments and whether they are to be considered taxable income to borrowers.  
  • Clarity on Section 1106 – Forgiveness – prior to the 8-week deadline. 

 

* * * * *

 

CBA understands that resources are limited, and Treasury and SBA are fielding many questions from a great number of lenders, potential borrowers, and others. CBA greatly appreciates the efforts of both agencies in the implementation of this historical and unprecedented program. We welcome any opportunity to provide any additional assistance or input. If you have any questions, please contact David Pommerehn, SVP/General Counsel, at 202-207-5161 or at dpommerehn@consumerbankes.com.

 

Sincerely,



Richard Hunt

President and CEO

Consumer Bankers Association

 

 


[1]  H.R. 748, 116th Cong., § 1102(a)(2) (2020).