American City Business Journals has joined The Washington Post and nine other news outlets in a lawsuit against the Small Business Administration that seeks detailed information about the $659 billion Paycheck Protection Program.
Matthew Kish of the Portland Business Journal writes, “On Friday, American City Business Journals, ABC, CNN, NBC, the Associated Press and the Center for Investigative Reporting were added as plaintiffs.
“The Paycheck Protection Program is the federal government’s primary Covid relief program for small business. The program has been heavily criticized for favoring larger, more established businesses at the expense of the vulnerable small businesses for which it was created.
“‘It’s important for our business journals to hold public institutions like the SBA accountable when they are disbursing taxpayer funds,’ said Jon Wile, vice president of content for American City Business Journals, the parent company of the Portland Business Journal. ‘And for our readers, there is tremendous value for them to see which banks processed the loans and to see how much funding their competitors and peers received. It is critical this lending information be released in a complete and timely fashion.’
“On April 16, American City Business Journals, through the Portland Business Journal, filed a Freedom of Information Act request with the SBA for information about every loan made through the program, including the amount, the borrower and the name of the bank that approved the loan.”
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