165K businesses got federal virus loans so far in Pennsylvania

HARRISBURG (AP) — The Treasury Department on Monday released the names of more than 26,000 businesses or organizations based in Pennsylvania that it says received funds from a federal program intended to support the economy as states shut down to stem the spread of the coronavirus.

The Treasury only identified borrowers that got more than $150,000. So far, that is about one-sixth of the more than 165,000 entities from Pennsylvania that borrowed money from the federal program, according to the data.

Prominent among those businesses are full-service restaurant owners, receiving more loans — almost 6,000 — as a business sector than any other in Pennsylvania, according to an Associated Press analysis.

Religious organizations, including churches, received more than 4,000, while law firms, dentists’ offices and insurance and real estate agents or brokerages each landed more than 3,000 loans apiece. Limited-service restaurant owners were right behind them, receiving more than 2,900 loans.

The average loan amount for the entire program was $107,000, the Treasury Department said in a broad summary of the program.

The government handed out $521 billion through the Paycheck Protection Program, a crucial piece of the government’s $2 trillion rescue package. The loans can be forgiven if the businesses mostly use the money to continue paying their workers. The program initially was set to expire June 30 but was extended last week to Aug. 8.

The public may never know the identity of more than 80% of the nearly 5 million beneficiaries to date because the Trump administration has refused to release details on loans under $150,000. That secrecy spurred a lawsuit by news organizations including The Associated Press.


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