INDIANAPOLIS — Before the first round of funding ran out for the Paycheck Protection Program, some Indiana businesses were able to apply for loans to support their employees. This made a huge difference for one local entrepreneur and she wants other companies to know they too can rebound from the pandemic as well.
Former IndyCar driver and owner of Speedway Indoor Karting and 1911 Grill, among other businesses, Sarah Fisher has found herself in a situation that many Hoosier business owners are facing.
“There were five business all together that were closed as a result of this,” Fisher said. “It gets tiring and one day feels like a week so when you finally get somewhere with a project or a loan application it feels like it has been months and in all honestly it has only been a couple of weeks.”
When the first government stimulus plan was approved, Fisher immediately applied for the PPP to help keep the staff of her five businesses employed.
“We have kind of been dividing and conquering and we are still paying them that full rate, we need them badly so when we restart whenever that is,” Fisher said.
Through the quick action from her bank lender, North Salem State Bank, Fisher’s employees are taken care of. She can use her company savings to take care of other expenses.
“These loans were really important for us to bridge that gap from shutdown to getting back open and to support our employees in the process,” Fisher said. “The paycheck protection loan was very important for us because we wanted to use the capital we had to be able to take care of bills we have outstanding from the first of March and getting ready for March madness and all the entertainment around that.”
Now that congress is on the verge of approving another round of relief funding, small businesses that were shut out of the first round of PPP loans will have another chance to apply for the PPP and Economic Injury Disaster Loans, also known as EIDL.
“This is unprecedented times,” said Stacey Poynter, the Small Business Administration’s Indiana Regional Director. “The whole country has never been declared a disaster. This program was not really set up for something like this, it was set up for individual natural disasters.”
Poynter says the SBA processed more than 14 years of loans in less than 14 days and the SBA did over 26,000 PPP loans just in Indiana.
If for some reason the federal funding runs out again, Poynter and the SBA has this message for Hoosier business owners:
“We have a lot of resources available for you, we still have our counseling arm through our small business development center of score chapters of business centers. Everybody is still working even though we are working remotely, even though we can't meet with you. We are here to assist you and to help get you through this time.”
For more information on relief funding and other resources: sba.gov/coronavirus.