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Monroe County launches small-business loan program

Monroe County launches small-business loan program

Monroe County has created a new loan program to assist small businesses that were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The MicroAdvantage Small Business Loan Program will provide eligible businesses with access to capital loans up to $50,000 to serve as gap financing when other sources of capital are not available.

The Monroe County Industrial Development Corp (MCIDC) is using $5.8 million in American Rescue Plan Act dollars to fund the program.

To qualify, small businesses must be headquartered in Monroe County, have less than $4 million in annual revenue, employ 25 or fewer full-time equivalent employees and be able to demonstrate that the funds will be used to respond to negative impacts of the pandemic.

“Small businesses are the engine of our local economy and entrepreneurs seeking to achieve the American dream drive our growth,” County Executive Adam Bello said in a news release. “Every fledgling business needs time to find its footing, grow and evolve, particularly traditionally underserved business such as Service Disabled Veteran-Owned (SDVOB) and Minority and Women-owned Business Enterprises (MWBE).

“The MicroAdvantage loan program is designed to empower all business owners and give them access to capital they need to succeed.”

There is a $100 application fee and $250 commitment fee, which can be funded with loan proceeds. Applicants also must pay MCIDC costs for state and federal tax lien searches, corporate searches and UCC filings.

A minimum of $800,000 will be earmarked for MWBE. SDVOB and MWBE will be offered a reduced interest rate and will have application fees waived.

Businesses that received other COVID-19 related assistance are eligible to apply. However, county, state and federal-level officials and any immediate household members, as well as companies and owners currently delinquent on state, local or federal taxes, are ineligible.

The program, which will require approval by the county legislature, is based on recommendations by the Commission on Racial and Structural Equity.

“Small businesses provide important jobs, products and services to the local economy and, for many, are the culmination of their American Dream,” county legislature Majority Leader Steve Brew said. “This program will help any and all small businesses with funds to cover payroll, expand or improve equipment and spaces, and many other critical needs they face on their bottom line.”

Visit the program website for more information.

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