ANDERSON — Rep. Victoria Spartz voted with the majority of the members of the U.S. House on the Payroll Protection Program.

Spartz, R-5th District, cast a vote to extend the program, as did the entire Indiana delegation in the U.S. House.

The bill passed by a vote of 415-3. The legislation now awaits action by the U.S. Senate.

The bill extends the amount of time small businesses will have to apply for loans that have helped many keep their workforce employed during the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.

“The Payroll Protection Program extension will help hundreds of small businesses in Indiana’s 5th District to keep their doors open and keep making payroll,” Spartz said in a press release. “It ensures that this money gets into the hands of our small business owners and the hard-working Hoosiers who need it most.”

The Paycheck Protection Program, or CARES Act, was signed into law on December 21, 2020, and was set to expire on March 31, 2021.

The bipartisan Paycheck Protection Program Extension Act extends that deadline by two months and provides an additional 30 days for the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to process loans submitted prior to the new May 31, 2021, deadline. The Payroll Protection Program has helped small businesses across America save tens of millions of jobs.

The push to extend the Payroll Protection Plan comes after the passage of the $1.9 trillion stimulus package, which President Joe Biden signed into law March 11.

The bill includes $7 billion to expand the program with other provisions to aid small businesses.

Spartz did vote no on the $1.9 trillion stimulus bill in March.

She authorized five proposed amendments to the legislation to improve government transparency and accountability, assist juvenile justice and foster care systems and to address concerns with standardized testing in schools.

All five amendments were rejected by the Democratic Party majority in the U.S. House.

Follow Ken de la Bastide on Twitter @KendelaBastide, or call 765-640-4863.

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Senior Reporter covering Anderson and Madison County government, politics and auto racing for The Herald Bulletin. Has been working as a journalist in central Indiana since 1977.