More than 1,000 Clark and Champaign employers received PPP loans

Rocking Horse Childrens Health is among local organizations and businesses to receive loans from the Paycheck Protection Program. BILL LACKEY/STAFF
Rocking Horse Childrens Health is among local organizations and businesses to receive loans from the Paycheck Protection Program. BILL LACKEY/STAFF

Over 1,000 employers in Clark and Champaign counties were approved for the Paycheck Protection Program that allowed them to keep over 15,000 people employed amid the coronavirus pandemic, according to federal data released this week.

The list included manufacturers, those in insurance, health care as well as local retailers and restaurateurs. It also included nonprofit organizations that applied for the loan program designed to keep people employed as the global health crisis has had an immediate economic impact in the country.

The Paycheck Protection Program was established by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) in April and was part of $2.2 trillion relief package that was passed at that time by congress and was signed by President Trump.

Those loans are designed to be forgiven for small businesses with 500 or less employees that are able to retain their workforce by the end of the loan period. As of June 30, the program distributed a total of $521 billion. Companies that received more than $150,000 were named by the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

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In Clark and Champaign counties, 215 employers received $150,000 or more in paycheck protection loans, with 11 receiving between $2 million to $5 million. The most a business can receive from that program, according to guidelines set by the SBA, is $10 million.

The businesses that were in the $2 million to $5 million range are expected to use a large portion of those loans to retain a total of 2,162 jobs in the area. Those included were manufacturers, temp agencies, an organization that provides foster care services, a surgical hospital as well as a health clinic.

In terms of retention, staffing solutions company Emergent Enterprises had a loan that was in the range of $1 million to $2 million and reported that it would help retain 500 jobs, according to a list released by the Treasury Department.

Benchmark Family Services Inc., which provides foster care services and has its national corporate office in New Carlisle, applied for a loan in the $2 million to $5 million range and it is expected to help retain 326 jobs.

Manufacturers such as Benjamin Steel Company, Inc., in Springfield and Johnson Welded Products Inc., in Urbana both applied for loans in the $2 million to $5 million range and the former was listed as retaining 221 jobs and the latter was listed as retaining 403 jobs as a result.

Ohio Valley Surgical Hospital, which temporarily closed in March due to state guidelines regarding elective surgeries, also applied for a Paycheck Protection Program loan in the $2 million to $5 million range. The hospital began ramping back up in May and the loan is expected to allow them to retain 235 employees.

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According to the treasury department, an estimated 1,192 employers in Clark and Champaign counties received loans of less than $150,000 and their names have not been released by that agency.

In total, nearly 5 million small businesses and organizations received loans across the country, with about 650,000 receiving more than $150,000. The loan was initially required to be spent within an eight week period after being received but that was later extended to 24 weeks, according to reporting by the Associated Press.

Locally there was a high demand for those loans and banks had received an unprecedented number of applications, the News-Sun reported in April. Many local businesses were impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, which led some to temporarily shutter their doors or temporarily lay off employees.

A statewide order in March called for the closing of businesses that were deemed nonessential. Those that were allowed to remain open had to make adjustments or temporarily suspend operations due to lack of customers or because of shortfalls in the supply chain.

Unemployment rates spiked in both Clark and Champaign counties during April, reaching 17.4% and 20.1% respectively before dipping to 12.4% and 11% in May.

The Paycheck Protection Program was designed to help businesses retain employees or bring back those that had been temporarily laid off as a result of the pandemic. The goal was to keep more people employed as unemployment claims nationwide hit record highs in the end of March and early April.

“This program is trying to keep as many people employed as possible,” John Brown, the president of Security National Bank told the News-Sun in April. “That is why the forgiveness piece is tied with being able to show that those businesses kept their doors open and their employees working.”

While the majority of those loans is to be used for payroll expenses, businesses can use portions of it to cover costs such as rent or mortgage payments during the loan period.

Businesses in Clark and Champaign Counties that received $2 to $5 million from the federal Paycheck Protection Program, and the jobs they retained.

Business Jobs retained:

ARC Staffing Solutions, LLC 249

Benchmark Family Services, Inc. 326

Benjamin Steel Company, Inc. 221

JM Consolidated Industries LLC 167

Johnson Welded Products, Inc. 403

Ohio Valley Surgical Hospital 235

Parker Trutec, Inc. 0

Rocking Horse Childrens Health 172

Seepex Inc. Unavailable

Tech II, Inc. 210

Tri-State Forest Products, Inc. 179

Source: U.S. Small Business Administration