Nature

Covid fraudsters are still at large


Generally, the faster the government tries to get taxpayers’ money out of the way, the more it ends up helping crooks buy cars and sunny vacations. The Covid pandemic was a 100-year event that required quick action, but the savage fraud in federal aid programs deserves years of after-the-fact scrutiny.

The Small Business Administration (SBA) was in charge of the $814 billion Paycheck Protection Program, and a report last month from its inspector general is invigorating reading. PPP provided forgivable loans to keep workers paid and businesses whole as the economy entered a government-ordered cryogenic freeze. To get money into businesses quickly, local banks were allowed to approve PPP applications.


Wj

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