BP says it will pay for any legitimate losses related to the oil spill. However, small businesses and the Obama administration say the oil giant is paying up too slowly. And recent data shows only 10% of the checks sent out by the energy company have gone to small businesses.
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“Now, we've got the SBA in there helping to provide bridge loans, and we've got the Department of Commerce helping businesses to prepare and document the damages that they're experiencing. But what we also need is BP being quick and responsive to the needs of these local communities,” the president said.
The president travels to the Gulf region again next week to inspect the latest clean-up efforts. Alongside the federal government, state governments are funding programs to help small businesses recover from this disaster.
On a brighter note, one organization says small businesses were more optimistic in May - slightly better than expected. The National Federation of Independent Business says its Small Business Optimism Index had its best reading since September of 2008 - a 92.2 -- up about one-and-a-half points.
The report says the economic recovery is too uncertain and small businesses are having a tough time creating jobs and securing loans.