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Letter to Small Business Administrator Jovita Carranza - Congressman Denver Riggleman Stands up for Farmers in Letter to the Small Business Administrator

Letter

Dear Administrator Carranza:

We write to urge your immediate attention and swift action to ensure small farmers and other
agricultural enterprises can access economic injury loans and emergency grants.

We were shocked and disappointed that, contrary to Congressional intent, the Small Business
Administration singled out farmers and agricultural businesses as ineligible for the economic
injury disaster loan and emergency grant program. On April 2, 2020, Reps. Delgado, Brindisi and
Harder led 86 Members of Congress in sending a letter urging the SBA to follow congressional
intent and include small farmers in the EIDL program as Congress intended under the CARES
Act.

When SBA failed to make this change, Congress passed the Paycheck Protection Program and
Health Care Enhancement Act and included an important provision that explicitly makes small
farms and other agriculture operations eligible for SBA's Economic Injury Disaster Loans and
Grants.

Despite this, we now learn from the SBA that it will not be taking new loan applications from
farmers due to a long list of pending applications from other small businesses. In other words, our
farmers are currently eligible for EIDL in theory only, which does not address the practical realities
of hardship so many of our local producers are facing day in and day out. We must ensure our
farmers left out of the first round of funding have a real chance of accessing this critical support
in the second round. This decision by the SBA is once again not consistent with Congress' intent
to include small farms in this program.

We ask you to share a detailed plan of how you will address these concerns and how SBA plans
to process new EIDL applications. We also ask for detailed information on the current number and
amount of EIDL applications pending and how much of the newly provided EIDL funding is
estimated be available after the SBA has processed all existing loan applications.

Thank you, Administrator Carranza, for your attention to this critical matter, and for SBA's work
to address the economic impacts of this pandemic. SBA's swift action on this issue will help
alleviate the concerns of our nation's family farms, which are vital to our country and our
communities.

Sincerely,


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