photo credit: Danilo_Vuletic // Shutterstock
The Los Angeles Lakers have returned a $4.6 million loan from the federal government program intended to help small businesses affected by COVID-19.
The money was apart of the $2.2 trillion CARES Act to help small businesses receive loans to cover employee salaries and other expenses. As a business with about 300 employees, the Lakers were eligible for a PPP loan, which is forgivable so long as the recipient spends 75% of the amount on payroll and doesn’t fire anyone.
They did apply for relief through the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program, but after reports that several large or highly capitalized businesses and corporations were getting the money instead of small businesses, the NBA franchise returned the money.
“The Lakers qualified for and received a loan under the Payroll Protection Program,” the Lakers said in a statement to ESPN. “Once we found out the funds from the program had been depleted, we repaid the loan so that financial support would be directed to those most in need. The Lakers remain completely committed to supporting both our employees and our community.”
The Lakers are not the only company to return their relief money. Shake Shack, a New York-based company, also returned a $10 million loan for the same reason, to help smaller businesses who are more in need of the money.
Written by Clarke Jones