AG Coalitions Tackle PPP, Price Gouging Concerns

  • Eighteen Democratic AGs, led by Illinois AG Kwame Raoul, sent a comment letter to the Small Business Administration (“SBA”) opposing the SBA’s proposed rule governing the appeals process for Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) loans, which would impact all SBA decisions regarding PPP loans, including borrowers’ eligibility and a loan’s amount, acceptable usage, and forgiveness.
  • The letter argues that the proposed rule is confusing, detrimental to borrowers’ rights, violates due process, and does not comply with the Administrative Procedure Act, and urges the SBA to use independent and neutral decision-makers in the appeals process and to provide borrowers an opportunity to respond to SBA’s determinations, among other things.
  • AG Raoul also filed an amicus brief on behalf of a bipartisan group of 30 AGs in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in Online Merchants Guild v. Cameron, No. 20-5723, in support of Kentucky AG Daniel Cameron’s position on states’ authority to enforce price gouging regulations during emergencies such as the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • The brief urges the court to overturn the District Court’s preliminary injunction preventing Kentucky from enforcing its price gouging regulations against retailers selling products on online marketplaces, arguing that price gouging laws help lower-income consumers gain access to scarce and essential goods, that these laws fall under states’ consumer protection responsibilities, and that state price gouging laws do not violate the Dormant Commerce Clause because they do not directly regulate the price of goods in out-of-state sales.