With COVID-19 cases rising, Sinema warned in Senate Banking Committee hearing that “now is not the time to pull back on critical support”
WASHINGTON – Arizona senior Senator Kyrsten Sinema spoke in a Senate Banking Committee hearing on the need for the Treasury Department and Federal Reserve to continue supporting Arizona families and small businesses during the coronavirus pandemic, and warned them that now is not the time withdraw support for lending facilities like the Main Street Lending Facility, on which Arizona businesses rely.
“Arizonans are struggling to make ends meet during the pandemic. I regularly hear from families and employers concerned about making it through the winter, especially since coronavirus cases are spiking across the country…With cases on the rise, now is not the time to pull back critical support for families and businesses in Arizona,” said Sinema.
In May, Sinema called on Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell to quickly make adjustments to the Main Street New Loan Facility and Main Street Expanded Loan Facility so Arizona small and mid-size businesses can get needed economic relief during the coronavirus pandemic. Sinema specifically asked for the Federal Reserve to:
- Further expand loan eligibility and include non-profits that are serving Arizonans and aiding in COVID-19 response;
- Provide greater flexibility on loan terms;
- Ensure that the Facilities are user-friendly and accessible to small community banks and credit unions.
The Federal Reserve Board listened to Sinema’s calls and expanded its Main Street Lending Program to allow more small and medium-sized businesses to be able to receive support,though more work remains to ensure Arizona businesses can fully access the facility. However, now the Treasury Department is withdrawing financial support for the lending facilities, hurting Arizona families and businesses when they need it most.