PROVIDENCE, RI (WPRI) – More than a third of federal relief funds for Rhode Island businesses have gone to less than 2% of borrowers, according to a Target 12 analysis of recently released data.
The US Small Business Administration on Tuesday released its most detailed account yet of the federal paycheck protection program, which was designed to keep small businesses alive during the pandemic.
In Rhode Island, nearly $ 2 billion has been allocated to 17,875 borrowers, ranging from a high of $ 9 million for Coastal Medical Inc. to a low of $ 100 for Susan M. Vartian, sole proprietor in Providence. .
On closer inspection, the federal program has heavily favored a small group of companies seeking relief, granting more than half of the nearly $ 2 billion to less than 5% of borrowers.
The data was released after a federal judge ruled against the SBA’s request to keep the information confidential. The second installment of data comes about five months after the federal agency released a partial list, including borrowers who received loans over $ 150,000. The amounts have been provided in ranges.
Yet the new data, while much more detailed with company names and specific amounts, does not appear to be complete. The program was designed to save jobs, but some companies did not provide job numbers or the SBA did not provide this information. In other cases, business addresses were listed in places outside of Rhode Island, such as Dorchester, a neighborhood in Boston.
Additionally, the SBA has sometimes approved loans, but companies have refused or never collected the money, which is not reflected in the data.
Target 12 provides a comprehensive list of Rhode Island loans and borrowers, divided into two groups: loans over $ 150,000 and loans under $ 150,000.
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