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Wyoming Small Businesses Get Second Chance At Payroll Protection Program Funds

Flickr Creative Commons/She Paused For Thought

In the last round of stimulus funds from the federal government, 7,618 Wyoming businesses received money from the Paycheck Protection Program, injecting more than $837 million into the state’s economy that business leaders hope will help soften the blow of the pandemic. 

But many businesses didn't get a piece of the pie. So starting today, small businesses that did not receive help last time around can now apply for federal support. It gives businesses with fewer than 500 employees funding for eight weeks to pay their employees and will then be forgiven if it's used for that purpose. 

The Small Business Association is the federal organization taking the applications. Amy Lea is its Wyoming director. She said she’s hearing from lenders that many more businesses are seeking help.

"There are hundreds of Wyoming applications on lenders' desks around the state right now, totaling millions of dollars," said Lea. "And we know those lenders are going to work so hard for Wyoming small businesses to make sure that we get our share of those funds."

But Lea said with that many businesses applying, the second round of funds could get snatched up quick.

"[In] the first tranche of funding, in 14 days, the FDA approved 14 years of loan guarantee applications, and it's possible this tranche of funding will go that quickly or even faster," warned Lea.

She recommended that even businesses unsure whether they need federal aid should put in an application. Lea saidthe Wyoming Small Business Development Networkcan help people walk through the decision-making process.

Have a question about this story? Contact the reporter, Melodie Edwards, at medward9@uwyo.edu.

Melodie Edwards is the host and producer of WPM's award-winning podcast The Modern West. Her Ghost Town(ing) series looks at rural despair and resilience through the lens of her hometown of Walden, Colorado. She has been a radio reporter at WPM since 2013, covering topics from wildlife to Native American issues to agriculture.
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