U.S. Small Business Administration

A photo of Sweet Peaks Ice Cream shop taken on June 10, 2020
Rachel Cramer / Yellowstone Public Radio

Many economists say the federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) has helped prevent broad economic collapse in the U.S. But they say transparency will be key in understanding how well the program actually worked. Yellowstone Public Radio News’s Nicky Ouellet spoke with Rachel Cramer who’s been reporting on the PPP in Montana and new rules to make it easier for borrowers to qualify for loan forgiveness.

U.S. Small Business Administration logo
U.S. Small Business Administration Website

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A new report shows over 21,700 loans through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) have been approved for small business, nonprofits and faith based organizations in Montana.

A manequinne in a black and white striped shirt shows in a window with a closed sign behind it.
Nicky Ouellet / Yellowstone Public Radio


Financial leaders in Montana say the majority of loan applications for the federal Paycheck Protection Program have been processed after some major roadblocks earlier in the week.

The Ellen Theater in Bozeman, Montana,  the evening of March 30, 2020.
Rachel Cramer/Yellowstone Public Radio

Montana financial leaders are encouraging business owners to get their ducks in a row as more funding for the federal Paycheck Protection Program was approved by Congress Thursday.

Tracie Kenyon, President and CEO of Montana's Credit Unions, says small businesses, as well as non-profit organizations and co-ops, will likely get a second chance to receive forgivable loans to pay employees.

A 'closed' sign on the door of the Agate Salon in Missoula, April 03, 2020.
William Marcus / Montana Public Radio

Montana businesses have been approved for nearly 13,500 loans totalling almost $1.5 billion as part of the federal coronavirus relief package.

Interior of the Red Lodge Brewing Company taproom.
Megan Kalb-Koenigsfeld / Red Lodge Ales Brewing Company

While restaurants, tap rooms and bars in Montana are allowed to provide take out and delivery service during the governor’s stay-at-home order, many business owners say they’re making a fraction of their normal sales.

The novel coronavirus.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention / Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

A day after declaring a state of emergency in Yellowstone County, local government leaders are asking businesses, schools and other groups to document financial impacts of the novel coronavirus. County officials say this information could attract federal relief money toward the county.