LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Friday marked the first day that small businesses could apply for federal loans through the $350 billion paycheck protection program but some small businesses did not find they help they were looking for.
Randall Fabiano, owner of Vintage Print in Moorpark, went online just after midnight to apply for a loan but ran into a snag.READ MORE: Food Truck Crashes In Vernon; One Dead
“I immediately was hit with a link because my business doesn’t qualify because we don’t have any outstanding debt with Bank of America,” he said.
Fabiano is not alone. On Bank of America’s Twitter feed, scores of angry business owners claim they were also denied because they do not have an open loan with the lending giant.
In an email, Bank of America confirmed that they are prioritizing “full relationship clients first,” meaning those with a business account and an open loan.
The bank said they have already received $6 billion in applications.READ MORE: `Solidarity' Cited In New Deal For 40k Behind-the-Scenes Film & TV Workers
Georgia Scheible, a family therapist in Simi Valley, said she was also told by her bank, Union Bank, that she won’t qualify at this time because she doesn’t have an open line of credit.
“We are literally being sent to the back of the line,” Scheible said. “Even though everyone including the mayor and president is saying we are here to help you, that’s not really true.”
Caroline Guiney, a first-time business owner, was scheduled to open her salon this week. Her husband went online today to apply but they aren’t sure they will qualify.
“Just to see it possibly not come to fruition is devastating,” Guiney said. “I am not in any shape, way, or form ungrateful, however, for a normal layperson like me, this is so confusing.”MORE NEWS: Child, 18 Months, Killed in North Hills Crash
Administration officials have said they hope banks will be able to do same-day approval process.