SMITH: An open letter to Congress

With all of the turmoil of the pandemic and this year’s elections, it is important for Congress to help small business by quickly passing S.3612 and H.R. 6821, the Small Business Expense Protection Acts of 2020, or H.R. 6754 Protecting the Paycheck Protection Program Act.

When the Protecting the PayCheck Program Act was passed, Congress made it clear this was not to be taxable. Now the Internal Revenue Service and Treasury have taken the position with the current tax laws that the PPP loans are not tax deductible. This, along with a second round of government forced shutdown now being imposed, will devastate many small businesses who are already reeling from government-mandated closures.

It is important that you and your colleagues act now and pass this legislation to help our small business and save our economy from devastation.

According to smallbiztrend.com as of March 2020, 47.3 percent of our workforce is employed by small businesses. In 2019 restaurants represented $863 billion of the Gross Domestic Product, and this year in a June 11, 2020 article by restaurantbusinessonline.com, it was reported that 85 percent of restaurants could fail. A Yelp survey published by CNBC shows that 60 percent of small business permanent closures are due to COVID-19. Imagine 60 percent of our small business failing and what that would do to our economy. Congress has the ability to help our small business.

If this bill is not passed quickly, the division between the middle class and the wealthy will continue to grow. We will fall into a recession greater than the last recession in 2008 that will destroy our families and economy for years to come.

Please take action and pass  S.3612 and H.R. 6821, the Small Business Expense Protection Acts of 2020, or H.R. 6754 Protecting the Paycheck Protection Program Act.

Kevin L. Smith is regional publisher for Bluegrass Newsmedia, which includes The Jessamein Journal. He can be reached at kevin.smith@bluegrassnewsmedia.com.