5 business owners charged in COVID-19 relief fraud scheme
ATLANTA — Five small-business owners are facing federal charges after prosecutors said they defrauded the Paycheck Protection Program out of a collective $4.1 million in loan funding.Darrell Thomas, 34, Andre Lee Gaines, 66, Khalil Gibran Green, 46, and Bern Benoit, 44, are all facing several charges including conspiracy to commit bank and wire fraud, U.S. Attorney BJay Pak said. The fifth business owner, 52-year-old Carla Jackson, is charged with money laundering, he said.Investigators said Thomas, Gaines, Green and Benoit submitted loan applications on behalf of five businesses and sought ab...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
PPP loans were meant to help small businesses save jobs amid the pandemic. So why does official data show thousands of recipients retained zero jobs?
When Quest Food Management Services was approved for a forgivable federal loan to help it preserve jobs during the pandemic, the Lombard, Ill.-based company, which supplies meals to schools throughout the Chicago area, was so grateful that it issued a news release celebrating its ability to keep more than 830 people employed.But data released this week by the Small Business Administration detailing who received loans from the Paycheck Protection Program did not tie any jobs to Quest’s $5.3 million loan. Like tens of thousands of other loan recipients listed in the official government data, the...
Missing jobs data and disputed loan amounts cloud government records on $660B small-business bailout
PHILADELPHIA — Michael Schulson was thrown a lifeline by the federal government’s bailout for small businesses during the coronavirus pandemic. It helped him get almost half of his 178 employees back to work serving takeout customers and outdoor diners at his popular Sampan and Double Knot restaurants in Philadelphia’s Center City.So he didn’t know what to think when he saw his company listed in records released this week by the Trump administration as having received millions more than his actual award from the Paycheck Protection Program — while retaining no jobs at all.“I was a bit surprise...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Minneapolis Fed finds small businesses take deepest cuts to sales from pandemic shutdowns
The pandemic has dealt a particularly large blow to smaller businesses, to women and minority-owned businesses, and to sectors such as entertainment, lodging and retail.Those are some of the findings of a May survey of nearly 1,100 businesses across Minnesota and in neighboring states conducted by the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.“The main takeaway is that COVID effects have been very wide and very deep and negative, but there’s also variation across those groups,” Ron Wirtz, regional outreach director, said during a webinar Tuesday on the impact of the pandemic on the economy.He noted ...
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
Black businesses largely miss out on opportunity zone money
President Donald Trump says the opportunity zone tax break he signed into law in 2017 has created “tens of thousands of jobs” and is helping minority communities and Black business owners. In a tweet earlier this month, he pointed to opportunity zones as proof he’d done more for the Black community “than any President since Abraham Lincoln.”There’s no way to prove that the tax break for wealthy investors who buy a stake in a business or property in the zones has created jobs or helped minority business owners. The federal government doesn’t collect information on projects attracting investment...