Federal data showed that 13,384 Colorado companies received PPP loans of more than $ 150,000. Some said they would not use that money to keep a single employee.
DENVER – More than 13,000 Colorado companies and nonprofits have received more than $ 150,000 in paycheck protection program loans from the federal government as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a 9NEWS analysis of federal data released Monday.
Of the 13,384 organizations that received these loans, 1,377 said they would use the money to keep non-employees and 1,049 did not provide a figure for employee retention.
The data was released on Monday after months of calls for transparency about the program, which had already granted more than $ 520 billion in loans at the end of June. The loans of more than $ 150,000 list the company but only provide a range of loan values.
For example, 95 organizations in Colorado received loans between $ 5 million and $ 10 million. To date, 533 organizations have received loans totaling more than $ 2 million.
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According to the data, two separate Snappy Nails franchises, one in Broomfield and the other in Westminster, each received a loan of between $ 5 million and $ 10 million. The Westminster site stated that it would keep nine employees with the funds. The Broomfield site stated that it would keep 14 employees.
On Tuesday morning, Vinh Pham, the owner of both sites, told 9NEWS that each site had loans of less than $ 100,000 and was unsure why the Small Business Administration table said otherwise.
An SBA spokesman admitted the data was incorrect, saying, “It appears that the company was originally approved for a larger loan due to a data entry error by the lender. What happened is that the lender made the amount before the payout corrected the mistake. ”
In addition, the SBA said the data showed “approved loans,” which does not mean that the loans were distributed or funded.
This isn’t the only obvious problem with the PPP paperwork.
For example, check out Forney Industries in Fort Collins. The SBA database said Forney received a $ 1 million to $ 2 million loan but had no employees on it. CEO Steve Anderson told Next Tuesday that the money paid his 172 employees for 8 to 10 weeks during the pandemic. He said he did not remember a question about the employee loyalty loan application.
“A company didn’t have to provide the number of employees to get its loan, even though SBA requested this information in the application,” said Christopher Chavez, spokesman for SBA Rocky Mountain. “You have to make it available to get forgiveness because you have to show your lender how many employees you have and how much you have paid them.”
At least two stores that had already closed because of the pandemic received loans. The Med, a restaurant in Boulder, closed its doors in early June. The data shows the restaurant received a loan of between $ 1 million and $ 2 million.
Joe Romano, who owned The Med and two other restaurants in Boulder, said he had decided to close his stores due to the unpredictability of the pandemic. Romano told 9NEWS on Monday that he was planning to return the PPP loan money because he had to lay off more than 300 employees.
According to the Small Business Administration running the loan program, PPP loans can be fully granted if the money is used for payroll, mortgage interest, rent, and utilities. According to the SBA website, 60% of the waived amount must be used on payroll to qualify.
These non-granted loans have an interest rate of 1%, according to the agency’s website.
For a full list of companies that have received loans in excess of $ 150,000, please see below. Click here for a look at the companies that received less.
Editor’s note: 9NEWS removed references to Snappy Nails from its database after the SBA confirmed that the data on their credit was incorrect.
If you have a tip about a Colorado company that has received a PPP loan, email us at [email protected].
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