President Barack Obama on March 26 signed legislation extending through April the U.S. Small Business Administration’s ability to provide enhancements in its two largest small business loan programs. The enhancements, first made available under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, include a higher guarantee on some SBA-backed loans and fee relief.
The SBA estimates the $40 million extension will support about $1.4 billion in small business lending, the agency said in a release.
As part of the Recovery Act enacted on Feb. 17, 2009, SBA received $730 million to help small businesses, including $375 million to increase the SBA guarantee on 7(a) operating capital loans to 90 percent and to waive borrower fees on most 7(a) and 504 fixed-asset loans.
Funds for these programs were exhausted Nov. 23, and an additional $125 million was provided in December. Those funds were exhausted in late February, and an additional $60 million was provided subsequently, SBA said. That funding was exhausted March 26.