The U.S. Senate voted to extend the Paycheck Protection Program, the federal government’s key relief effort to deliver aid to small businesses hard hit by the pandemic, as the deadline to apply for a loan rapidly approaches with billions of dollars still left untouched.

The program is currently on track to expire just days from now on Wednesday, March 31. The bill — titled the PPP Extension Act of 2021 — will extend the application deadline to May 31, 2021 and provide an additional 30-day period for the Small Business Administration to process applications that are still pending. Now that it has been approved by the Senate, it will go to President Joe Biden to be signed into law.

Last year, the program approved 7.6 million loans worth more than $687 billion between April and August. Since it reopened in January 2021 for new first-time applicants and for second loans, about 3.1 million loans have been made totaling nearly $196 billion as of March 21, 2021. The remaining funds are expected to run out in mid to late April.

If you or your drivers are seeking a PPP lender, please contact Matt Daus at