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The Resilience of Main Street

Apr 10, 2020
Column

Small businesses are one of America’s greatest assets. They breathe life into our communities, and they are the gold standard for unleashing human potential. It is because of their determination that our country possesses the opportunity for unparalleled growth.

Main Street employs almost sixty percent of our workforce across Texas’ 25th District. Whether we are eating at a rural family-owned bakery or shopping in a downtown boutique, these businesses have touched every aspect of our lives. They were built by men and women who aspired to more and turned their dreams into realities.

Under normal circumstances, achieving these dreams means meeting daily challenges and adapting to an everchanging business climate. But right now, as we are facing an unprecedented economic shutdown due to the coronavirus, small businesses are in the fight of their lives. Some are on the verge of closing their doors permanently and losing everything. While I have worked with my colleagues in Congress and the Administration to provide crucial relief over the last few weeks, there is still more to be done.

Creating new loan programs to help small businesses stay afloat is a necessary start, but now we must track execution and solve problems as they happen in real time. As technical issues have arisen over the last week, I have been working with the Administration to ensure that both borrowers and lenders have clear guidelines on how to carry out these programs. We need to continually push to make sure they are running smoothly, and any unnecessary burdens placed on local bankers are lifted as they navigate high volumes of applications. Most importantly, we must guarantee that funding and resources will be there for the duration of the crisis.

Over the last week, I have had the opportunity to speak directly with hundreds of business owners in almost every county of our district. While there is a palpable sense of urgency, there still remains the same hope that has carried their work through generations.

In our current world of unpredictability, one thing is certain – Main Street is resilient and ready, and its spirit will help pull us through this crisis.