PPP Extended, American Airlines Under Fire

Very brief updates, since yesterday, it was not only a weekend but a national holiday. But there are a few things to talk about.

PPP Extension

First thing, President Trump yesterday signed into law the bill that had passed Congress previously last week, that would extend the PPP Paycheck Protection Program loan deadline from June 30th, which is obviously now in the past, to August 8th.

$130 billion of money earmarked for the Paycheck Protection Program is still unused. So if you’re a business owner, independent contractor, sole proprietor, and you have not yet applied for the PPP Paycheck Protection Program, you now have until August 8th to do so. That’s at least according to federal law. I’m not sure at this point which lenders are going to reopen their doors, all right?

The company I went with, I went through Kabbage of FinTech to get my PPP loan. It looks like on their website they’re saying, “Oh, the Paycheck Protection Program is closed.” So a lot of lenders have not yet updated their websites to reflect what President Trump did yesterday signing that bill into law that extends the deadline to August 8th. We’ll have to wait and see which ones reopen their applications soon.

Secretary Scalia on the Reopening

This morning, a Secretary of Labor at Eugene Scalia was on Fox News Sunday talking about the reopening of the country and saying that it is still very much possible to continue to do, but it just must be done safely.

He said, “We have new cases, we have to keep an eye on that. But I believe we can continue to reopen workplaces safely. It’s going to be important that people take social distancing seriously, wear masks in circumstances where they’re not able to social distance and the like. We can reopen safely. We can reopen while the virus is still there, but it will get more challenging if people don’t take that seriously.”

American Airlines Under Fire

Like we talked about last week on the channel, American Airlines on July 1st started booking full capacity flights.

One Senator, Senator Jeff Merkley, a Democrat from Oregon, is not happy about this.

He flew on a packed flight and he felt that this was not safe due to COVID-19.

So he tweeted to American Airlines, “How many Americans will die because you fill middle seats with your customer shoulder to shoulder hour after hour? This is incredibly irresponsible.

People eat and drink on planes and must take up masks to do so. No way you aren’t facilitating spread of COVID infections.”

He said, “I will introduce a bill to ban the sale of middle seats through this pandemic, and I’ll work with colleagues to include it in a package of airline accountability reforms they are crafting.”

Senator Merkley’s not the only one who feels this way.

Last week, Senator Bernie Sanders sent a letter to Transportation Secretary, Elaine Chao, and Department Transportation Administrator, Stephen Dixon, saying, “There is a universal agreement amongst scientists and medical experts that social distancing and mask wearing are the two most important and effective tools we have to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and save lives. Yet across the industry, airline policies on mask wearing and social distancing have been inconsistent, incomplete and unenforced.”

Robert Redfield, Director of the CDC, said, “There is substantial disappointment with American airlines. I can tell you when they announced that the other day, obviously there are substantial disappointment with them. I can say this is under critical review right now by us at CDC. We don’t think it’s the right message.”

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