May 21, 2020

Congressmen Neguse and Crow Lead Colorado Delegation Letter Calling for Regulatory Flexibility for Veteran Service Organizations

VSOs Are Struggling to Gain Access To The Funds They Need And Realize Full Loan Forgiveness Under CARES Act Paycheck Protection Program

Washington D.C.— Today, Congressmen Joe Neguse and Jason Crow led the Colorado Delegation in calling on the Department of the Treasury and the Small Business Administration to provide regulatory flexibility to ensure that Veteran Service Organizations (VSO) have access to the funds they need and receive full loan forgiveness under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) section of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

In a letter addressed to Department of the Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and Small Business Administration Administrator Jovita Carranza, the lawmakers called attention to the fact that VSOs are unable to realize full loan forgiveness due to their small staff size and high number of volunteers. The letter notes that the Small Business Administration’s Interim Final Rule requires that 75 percent of PPP funds be used on payroll costs.

“Veteran Service Organizations serve as the lifeblood for many communities throughout Colorado by providing an essential service to veterans, military personnel and their families,” said Congressman Neguse. “We must honor our veterans by ensuring they can access the support and benefits they need always, but in particular through this crisis. It is vital that we ensure necessary flexibility for VSOs through the Paycheck Protection Program and ensure complete loan forgiveness, so they can weather this moment and continue their good work serving our communities.”

“There is a sacred promise in America, that if you put on the uniform and serve our country, we will be there for you and your family upon return,” said Congressman Crow. “We can't let the coronavirus disrupt the promise we made to our veterans and let our VSOs go under because of a rule that fails to acknowledge their unique mission. In providing small business loans to VSOs, we need to have the necessary flexibility and criteria in place to ensure our VSOs can utilize these loans, get loan forgiveness and continue to care for our veterans during these tough times.”

“Despite their doors closing due to the pandemic, Veterans Service Organizations have been working hard to provide veterans and their families with the resources they need, especially during this uncertain time,” said Senator Bennet. “Like many groups, Veterans Service Organizations require more flexibility within the PPP program, and we need to ensure we meet their need so they can continue to serve veterans and their families now and in the future.”

View text of the letter here.