Expanding the Paycheck Protection Program to All Cannabis Businesses

Published on May 7, 2020, By MassRoots Staff

Marijuana News Politics

Paycheck Protection Program Cannabis

Earlier this week, MassRoots obtained a loan under the Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”), which has been critical to ensuring our employees are paid their regular salaries so they, in turn, have the money they need to support their families, cover medical bills, and pay rent. We believe that all cannabis-related businesses, both plant-touching and ancillary, should be able to obtain PPP loans in order to support the hundreds of thousands of employees that comprise the regulated cannabis industry.

Paycheck Protection Program Equality

We’re asking our supporters, both individuals and businesses, to take the following steps to raise awareness and help cannabis businesses obtain equal access to PPP funding:

  1. Tweet the reasons you support #PPPEquality to @realDonaldTrump, @PressSec and your Senators and Congressmen.
  2. Email the White House and President Trump’s campaign in support of #PPPEquality at newsadmin@whitehouse.gov and pressoffice@donaldtrump.com.
  3. Call the White House at 202-456-1111 and your Senators and Congressmen in support of equal access to PPP funding.
  4. If you’re employed in the cannabis industry, please record a video testimonial on how PPP funding would impact your life. You can submit it here or Tweet it, tagging @realDonaldTrump, your Senators and Representatives, and using #PPPEquality. 
  5. Post on Instagram, tagging the White House and your representatives, using #PPPEquality on the reasons why you support cannabis businesses having equal access to PPP loans.

Why is structural reform necessary?

When the U.S. federal government signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act into law on March 27, 2020, one of the measures included in the bill was the Paycheck Protection Program. The PPP is designed to help small businesses and their employees survive during the stay-at-home orders and trying times of the pandemic, which is affecting businesses from all markets.

The PPP website describes the initiative as: 

“An SBA loan that helps businesses keep their workforce employed during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis,” and “a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll.”

While cannabis remains illegal at the federal level, under the Controlled Substances Act, and the new law denies money from the CARES Act to businesses that are federally illegal, these businesses are not operating illegally at the state level. They are tightly regulated by the individual states.

Law-abiding, regulated cannabis businesses, whether plant touching or ancillary, and their employees should be granted the same access to government assistance as any other legally-operating business. 

Now is the time to tell the U.S. government that you think the Paycheck Protection Program should be expanded to include cannabis businesses. Stand up for #PPPEquality with us and all of the other small businesses that make-up the regulated cannabis industry in the United States.

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