Coronavirus Coverage from KARK

Trump signs coronavirus aid bill as tensions rise over next one

Coronavirus

The measures sends aid to small businesses and hospitals as well as providing funding for more testing.

President Donald Trump speaks before signing a coronavirus aid package to direct funds to small businesses, hospitals, and testing, in the Oval Office of the White House, Friday, April 24, 2020, in Washington. Sen. Roy Blunt, R-Mo., left, and Jovita Carranza, administrator of the Small Business Administration look on. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

WASHINGTON (NBC News) — President Donald Trump signed a nearly $500 billion interim coronavirus bill on Friday that includes additional money for the small-business loan program, as well as more funding for hospitals and testing.

The bill passed the Senate earlier this week by voice vote and was approved by the House on Thursday on a 388-5-1 bipartisan vote.

The bill includes more than $320 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program, or PPP, created by the CARES Act, which was passed late last month. The program, which quickly ran out of money because of heavy demand, provides forgivable loans to small businesses that keep their employees on the payroll.

About $60 billion of the additional PPP funding will be set aside for businesses that do not have established banking relationships, such as rural and minority-owned companies. Expanding access to the aid was a priority for Democrats who worried that some businesses were being shut out of the fund.

To read more from NBC News, click here.

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