More than 11,000 Connecticut small businesses have accessed over $1 billion in forgivable Payroll Protection Program loans in the program's second round.

The second round of loans, approved by Congress and signed into law in late December, began Jan. 11.

“The re-opening of PPP has provided needed support to over 11,600 Connecticut businesses and their employees,” Catherine Marx, Connecticut district director for the U.S. Small Business Administration, said in a Feb. 2 statement.

“We encourage any eligible Connecticut small business continuing to struggle due to the coronavirus pandemic to take advantage of the PPP before the March 31 statutory deadline, subject to the availability of funding.”

Second Round

The second round of PPP funding sets aside money for small businesses that didn’t get loans in the first round.

The first draw PPP loan is for small businesses and eligible entities that didn’t get a loan before Dec. 27, 2020.

The second draw is for borrowers who previously got a PPP loan, generally have 300 or fewer employees, and saw at least a 25% reduction in gross receipts due to the pandemic.

The program includes set asides for new and smaller borrowers, and those in low and moderate income communities.

Marx said the program includes set asides for new and smaller borrowers, for borrowers in low and moderate income communities, and for community and small business lenders.

“Small business owners are not in this alone,” she said.

“The Connecticut District office, through our lending and resource partners, continues to provide support to the smallest businesses and underserved communities to increase access to capital during these challenging times.”

New Guidance

Marx encouraged businesses to use the SBA’s Lender Match to find participating financial institutions.

The SBA recently issued new rules and guidance for the second round of PPP loans.

The second round allows borrowers to take tax deductions for covered business expenses.

The second round allows borrowers to take tax deductions for covered business expenses, including rent and utilities.

Nationally, 891,044 new PPP applications were approved for more than $7.2 billion in loans.

The SBA issued $525 billion in loans to over 5.2 million businesses in the first round while more than 63,000 Connecticut businesses received PPP loans totaling more than $6.6 billion.