MOSES LAKE – A review of U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) loan data for Grant and Adams counties shows that the region’s largest paycheck protection program loans were granted to clinics, hospitals, agricultural employment agencies and large farms. But the loans have also helped other businesses.
Matt Moore, one of Moore Furniture’s co-owners in Ephrata, who took out a $ 151,400 PPP loan in early 2020 for nine jobs, said the family business took out the loan to keep people on staff and because that things were so uncertain at first. in the pandemic.
“We pulled it out early on, and we weren’t entirely sure whether we were going to be shut down or not,” Moore said.
Moore said the funds were particularly crucial in helping to retain delivery drivers, who had to institute a number of new safety measures when delivering furniture and appliances.
“We have given very good increases to our delivery team. They had to use protection and more care, and make sure to be more careful, ”Moore said.
While Moore said his company repaid part of the loan, data from ProPublica’s website lists the loan statements as “forgiven as of December 17, 2020”.
The PPP was launched under the $ 2.2 trillion CARES (Coronavirus Air, Relief and Economic Security) law adopted by Congress at the end of March 2020. The objective of the program was to cover part of the wage bill and business expenses for a period of eight to 24 weeks to keep businesses in business and employees during business closures in response to the COVID-19 outbreak in early 2020. Loans can be canceled if at least 60% are spent on the payroll and no employee is made redundant or see their wages drop.
Two rounds of PPP loans were funded, one in 2020 and one in 2021, with a number of companies applying for and receiving two loans.
“The PPP is the biggest thing we have deployed in the history of the agency,” said Melanie Norton, deputy director of the SBA’s Seattle office. “It provides peace of mind to keep things moving, and it’s the most important thing we’ve heard from businesses. “
According to SBA data available on Federalpay.org, an information website for U.S. government employees, the largest P3 loan in Grant County was $ 4.1 million, made to Moses Lake Community Health. Center in April 2020, followed by $ 3.8 million at REC Solar Silicon and then $ 1.8 million at D&L Holdco, owners of D&L Foundry on Route 3 northeast.
According to the data, the Moses Lake Community Health Center reported employing 312 people, REC reported 78 employees, and D&L reported 171. All three loans are reported as having been canceled, according to data available on the ProPublica website, which tracks beneficiaries and the status of all loans over $ 150,000.
Federalpay and ProPublica both analyzed publicly available data that can be downloaded from the SBA website.
Other major recipients of ZIP code 98837 (Moses Lake area) were Omni Staffing Services ($ 1.5 million for 179 jobs), Ag World Support Systems ($ 1.4 million for 169 jobs), Lad Irrigation Company ( $ 1.1 million for 97 jobs) and the employment office. R&SL Inc. ($ 1 million for 476 jobs).
By the end of May 2021, the SBA had loaned nearly $ 800 billion nationwide – $ 277 billion in 2021 alone – to 11.8 million borrowers, and has so far canceled $ 280 billion of these loans, according to data from the SBA.
In the Quincy area, the main beneficiaries were fruit processor Morgans of Washington ($ 2.1 million for 205 jobs), Stetner Electric ($ 2 million for 74 jobs) and consulting firm Above the Dirt (1 , $ 6 million for 254 jobs).
In the Ephrata region, the main beneficiaries were Grant County Hospital District 3 / Columbia Basin Hospital ($ 1.9 million for 145 jobs) and Willow Drive Nursery ($ 1.6 million for 137 jobs).
In Royal City, the two main beneficiaries of the PPP were Royal Ridge Fruit & Cold Storage ($ 1.3 million for 149 jobs) and Lawrence Orchards, which received two loans totaling $ 1.4 million for approximately 175 jobs.
In Warden, the two main beneficiaries were S&C Ranching ($ 1 million for 103 jobs) and Russet King Potato Company ($ 1 million for 159 jobs).
In Mattawa, the main beneficiaries of the PPP were vegetable and melon producer Del Christensen and Sons (as Tatoes LLC) which received two loans of approximately $ 940,000 each for a total of $ 1.8 million. for about 80 jobs, and Sonrise Orchards, which also received two loans. – $ 927,000 in 2021 and $ 815,000 in 2020 – for 135 jobs.
In Othello, the primary beneficiary of the PPP was Columbia Basin Health Association, which received a single loan of almost $ 4 million for 373 jobs, Rangeview Ag Labor, which received two loans of approximately $ 1 million each for about 150 jobs, and Dorsing Farms, which received a loan of $ 1.4 million for 120 jobs.
Outside the big cities, PPP loans have shrunk considerably. In Soap Lake, the largest loan went to McKay Healthcare and Rehabilitation / Public Hospital District 4 for $ 464,000 for 35 jobs. In Wilson Creek, no PPP loans over $ 40,000 have been made.
Charles H. Featherstone can be contacted at [email protected].