Small business relief program launches, hits snags

NEW YORK (AP) — The federal government’s $349 billion relief program for small businesses got off to a rocky start Friday as hundreds of thousands tried to apply for desperately needed loans.

Many small business owners ran into bureaucratic or technological road blocks. Others discovered their bank wasn’t yet prepared to accept applications.

A major trade group for small businesses complained that too many of its members were “shut out” from getting loans. Still, some did succeed in at least getting the process started.

The Small Business Administration said it had approved more than 12,460 loans valued at $3.9 billion.

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