Time is not on the side of small businesses seeking federal assistance to cope with COVID-19 and the economic collapse. This is especially unfortunate since time is essentially what Congress bought with the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), a short-term mechanism designed to give businesses cash to keep their doors open and employees on the payroll. And while PPP supported at least two-thirds of small business jobs (through early July), Congress has dithered on additional support.

With about one out of four small businesses expecting to need additional government assistance this year, there are steps Congress can take this fall to provide longer-term relief for small businesses. They range from more low-interest loans to money to states to provide grants to smaller Main Street businesses.

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