Trump signs extension of COVID-relief fund for businesses

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump on Saturday signed into law a temporary extension of a subsidy programme for small businesses battered by the coronavirus.

The legislation extends the June 30 deadline for applying for the programme to August 8.

Lawmakers created the programme in March and have modified it twice since, adding money on one occasion and more recently permitting more flexible use of the funding despite some grumbling among GOP conservatives.

About USD130 billion of USD660 billion approved for the programme remains eligible for businesses to seek direct federal subsidies for payroll and other costs such as rent, though demand for the Paycheck Protection Programme has pretty much dried up in recent weeks.

The Democratic-controlled House voted on Wednesday to approve the extension of the program meafter the Republican-controlled Senate did the same.

Trump had been expected to sign the measure.

US President Donald Trump. PHOTO: AP