In statement regarding the House of Representatives passing bipartisan legislation amending the Paycheck Protection Program to provide struggling small businesses with greater flexibility by adjusting loan forgiveness requirements, the latest effort by lawmakers to provide relief from the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, American Bus Association President & CEO Peter Pantuso said:
"We appreciate the House taking this action and recognizing the hardship small businesses are facing, particularly for those who did not fully understand their obligations after initially accepting funds under the PPP. By extending the original loan coverage period to 24 weeks, rather than the original eight weeks, and extending the deadline for rehiring workers till the end of the year, the legislation can help some businesses in terms of eligibility for loan forgiveness. But there are many transportation-related businesses who have not received or qualified for PPP money, or who won’t qualify for loan forgiveness, and their struggle for survival during this pandemic continues. We need Congress to do more. As the traveling public remains at home, with businesses and schools shuttered, and the prospect of public transportation on hold for the foreseeable future, these essential transportation businesses cannot hold out without additional help from Congress, just like the other transportation modes received. The private motorcoach industry needs $15 billion in grants and loans to keep moving America when citizens are ready and able to travel again."