WASHINGTON—The Treasury Department said Tuesday it would begin forgiving loans granted to small-business owners under the Paycheck Protection Program, following banks’ and borrowers’ complaints that the process had been bogged down.
The government expects to approve and pay forgiveness requests by late this week or early next, a Treasury spokesperson said. The applications are generally expected to be approved quickly, with the exception of loans above $2 million that will get added scrutiny.
Business advocates, banks and lawmakers have raised concerns that the process of turning the loans into grants is too complex and slow under the $670 billion federal program, designed to help small businesses respond to the economic fallout of the pandemic with forgivable government-backed loans distributed through banks.
“The ultimate success of the program will depend on forgiveness, so small-business owners are eager to learn of [Treasury officials’] decisions,” said Kevin Kuhlman, senior director of government relations