Disaster Declaration Brings Low Interest Loans For Small Businesses In Pennsylvania, Elsewhere
Small businesses that have lost revenue from the coronavirus will be able to apply for low-interest loans now that Pennsylvania has received a disaster declaration from the US Small Business Administration.
The action came a day after Governor Tom Wolf asked for the declaration for the 67 counties and three days after recommending the closure of all “non-essential” businesses.
“We are extremely grateful to the SBA for recognizing the urgency of this situation and for accommodating our request so quickly,” said Wolf. “I encourage our businesses and nonprofits to review the SBA resources available to them and take advantage of this financial assistance opportunity during this time of uncertainty.”
The statement potentially frees millions of dollars in emergency loan funds for small businesses that have been forced to shut down by fears of the coronavirus.
James L. Smith, president and CEO of the Economic Growth Connection of Westmoreland, said small business owners should be familiar with the three step process to apply for the SBA Economic disaster Loans.
“If your business has suffered during this emergency, you need to prepare to file,” County Commissioner Sean Kertes said. “At this point, it’s unclear how much funding the SBA will allocate to Pennsylvania, so we urge our local businesses not to wait. We want the county economy to be well positioned to come out strong once this is over. ”
The loans are intended for small businesses and nonprofits that have lost income because of the coronavirus – and can reach $ 2 million, officials said.
These loans can be used to pay off fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that cannot be paid due to the impact of the disaster, Wolf said. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses with no credit available elsewhere and 2.75% for nonprofits.
Businesses with questions about funding should contact the SBA Pittsburgh District office at [email protected]
Spokeswoman Janet Heyl said the SBA’s partner network in western Pennsylvania still provides confidential advice to small businesses over the phone and through online training courses.
These partners include Chatham University Women’s Business Center, Duquesne University Small Business Development Center, Saint Vincent University Small Business Development Center, and University of Pittsburgh Small Business Development Center.
Other organizations in Allegheny and Westmoreland counties offer help for small businesses.
The Greensburg-based Progress Fund, a non-profit community development financial institution, is offering payment relief to its borrowers for the month of April, while Pittsburgh-based Honeycomb Credit is offering loans to small businesses that need working capital for the month of April. the pandemic.
Each small business assistance loan will have a 45-day pay-off period and will bear interest only for six months. Principal can usually be obtained in as little as 30 days.
Honeycomb operates a platform where a company’s loans are funded by local investors. Unlike Kickstarter and other crowdfunding sites, Honeycomb allows investors to provide micro-loans to the businesses they support and get their money back with interest.