In response to Freedom of Information Act requests, the Small Business Administration (SBA) has released information on loans made through the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) that was passed by Congress to support small businesses suffering from effects of pandemic closures. The SBA separated loan data based upon the amount of money that was loaned to companies.
Companies who borrowed $150,000 or more were individually named and aggregated based upon loan amounts. Those borrowing under $150,000 were not named but the loan amount was specified. In all, 219 companies located in the Blaine and Birch Bay 98230 zip code received funds.
Of these, 21 companies received from $150,000 to between $2-5 million dollars. These include KamWay ($2-5 million), Resort Semiahmoo ($1-2 million), Totally Chocolate ($350,000-1 million), Van Wingerden ($350,000-1 million). These loans supported 1,289 employees.
In the below $150,000 category, 198 companies received funds ranging from $371 up to $138,200. (Editor note: Point Roberts Press, Inc. parent company of The Northern Light, received funds under this classification.) There were 655 employees working for these companies with an average of $9,627 per employee.
In Point Roberts, 25 companies with 89 employees received $840,688 in loans.
Not surprisingly, Bellingham companies got the lion’s share of the loans in Whatcom County. In the over $150,000 categories, 246 companies with 13,524 employees were loan recipients. The top borrower, Family Care Network with 488 employees, received between $5-10 million. Unity Care, with 281 workers, received between $2-5 million, as did The Markets LLC, owner of the Blaine Cost Cutter store. Avenue Bread, CityMac, Mt. Baker Ski Area and Whatcom Family YMCA each received between $350,000-1
In all, companies receiving more than $350,000 had 13,524 employees.
There were 7,160 Bellingham company employees working for 2,098 companies who received up to $150,000 for an average employee payout of $10,304. The health industry sector had a strong showing with one each receiving between 2 and 10 million dollars, three in the $1-2 million range and 35 between $150,000 and $1 million.
The PPP allowed companies to apply for funds equal to 2.5 times their average monthly payroll costs. When it was first implemented, companies were required to spend 75 percent of the money on payroll over eight weeks and to maintain employee count. If they achieved this and spent the remainder of the money on allowable expenses, the loan would be converted into a grant and would not need to be paid back.
Subsequently, the percentage needing to be spent on employees was reduced to 60 percent and the time period was relaxed.