The backlog of small business loans held up by the federal government shutdown is getting bigger by the day.

The Small Business Administration halted its program supporting 7(a) loans for working capital and 504 loans for commercial properties on December 22, the day the government shutdown began, The Washington Post reports. Usually, the SBA manages about 200 loans for working capital and 120 loans for commercial properties per day, amounting to roughly $200 million worth of loans every day for small and midsize businesses. Currently, only funds for disaster-related loans remain active. As the longest government shutdown in U.S. history drags on to day 24 with no clear end in sight, small business advocates are urging the president to restart the SBA's lending program.

"It is important that small businesses who apply for loan guarantees that they are able to get their money," Nydia M. Velázquez, chairwoman of the House Committee on Small Business told The Washington Post. "This is going to have a direct impact on the operation of their businesses." 

Linda McMahon, head of the Small Business Administration, has plans to expedite loans as soon as the government reopens, according to the report. President Trump said earlier this month that the shutdown could last "months or even years."

Published on: Jan 14, 2019