June 10, 2020- As new federal dollars are released to help businesses keep paying workers, Illinois’ Congressional delegation says they voted for federal payroll aid to help nonprofits like foster care providers keep people employed, not to supplement the state’s coffers.
The federal government approved additional funds for the Payment Protection Program last week. it also relaxed the requirements for organizations hoping to have the loans forgiven.
In a letter to Gov. J.B. Pritzker, the GOP members of the U.S. House of Representatives said they have heard from providers that state agencies are asking for information on whether the organizations are having payroll loans forgiven and risk a reduction in state funds.
“Based on our understanding of new guidance issued by the state, these nonprofits will need to comply with the state reporting requirement in order to receive their expected payments from the state and risk a reduction of dollars awarded in current or future state contracts as a result of the PPP loan being forgiven in part or in whole,” it read. “To our knowledge, currently, no other state is requiring human service providers to report to the state on the status of their PPP loan or tying these loan dollars to state funding.”
U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis, R-Taylorville, said they passed the aid packages to supplement nonprofits like those that provide services to foster children, not supplant state dollars.
“They got that loan and, at the same time, to have the governor and state officials reduce the state funding they’re going to invest because they were eligible for a program doesn’t seem right,” he said. “They shouldn’t punish not-for-profit service providers because they’re trying to survive just like our mom-and-pop shops are.”
Other providers have said it makes sense for the state to not double-pay providers with taxpayer dollars, but they’re also seeing reductions from various other sources.
The governor’s office didn’t respond to requests for comment on the letter.