NORFOLK, Va. – It's customers like Harriet and her family who help keep the doors open at Hummingbird Macarons and Desserts on Granby St.
The owner, Kisha Moore, says last year’s Paycheck Protection Program, also known PPP, was also very necessary to keep her business of seven years alive.
“The goal is to protect employees. The PPP helped us to be able to keep people employed,” adds Moore.
Now, she’s waiting on the second round of funding. Applications for loans opened in January.
“Some have received theirs, but others is taking a lot longer than it did before,” she adds.
Chris Shelton, one of the co-owners at Cure Coffee, just got his PPP.
“Second round we received over the weekend!” said Shelton.
He says getting this round is "critical."
“Our customers are why we are still here, but had it not been for the PPP, there was no chance,” he adds.
The Biden-Harris administration wants to make sure all small businesses have a fair chance of getting funding this time around.
For the next 14 days only, businesses with fewer than 20 employees can apply for relief. This allows lenders to focus on the smallest businesses.
The new changes are also supposed to help companies owned by people of color and women-owned businesses like Moore’s.
“I think that it’s good that they are putting some parameters around it, but you are doing that in the middle of applications already gone out,” said Moore.
She submitted her application last month and wants to know what’s next.
News 3 reached out to the Small Business Administration for that answer.
In a statement, they said:
Applications already submitted by lenders to the SBA before starting the exclusivity period will still be processed by the SBA. Once the exclusive period ends, lenders will be able to submit PPP loan applications for all eligible businesses and nonprofits again through March 31, 2021, when the program ends.
Meaning: If you already filled out an application, you do not need to resubmit it.
“I think it’s a great idea. Do I think it’s necessary? Absolutely,” adds Moore.
While Moore and many other businesses wait for funding, she says it's important for business owners to also support each other.
“So, whether that’s, ‘I’m going to get coffee from Cure; I’m going to get an Açai bowl from Zeeks or bread from La Brioche,'" she adds.
Both owners say coronavirus cases may be trending downward and people may be getting vaccines, but they still need the community to get through the pandemic.
“The PPP helps small businesses, but it hasn’t cured what is happening to us,” said Moore.
Shelton says, “A business cannot stay open without customers, no matter how much government steps in.”
For more information on the PPP loan and the SBA, click here.