Massachusetts will add an additional $ 10 million to help small businesses that applied for emergency loans before the the state was overrun with requests and stopped accepting nominations, Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito said on Friday.
Mass Development’s board of directors will vote to appropriate the funds next week, doubling the total amount of funds to $ 20 million for emergency small business loans, Polito said at a press conference at the State House.
The small business recovery loan fund was inundated with requests after the relief was announced to help businesses that have had to shut down or cut hours as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, Gov. Charlie Baker said . The Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation, the quasi-public agency responsible for disbursing the funds, stopped receiving requests Thursday afternoon.
“The reason the lieutenant governor talked about Mass Development appropriating an additional $ 10 million for the funds is because it was oversubscribed,” Baker said. “We will do our best to continue to manage this in the future.”
Baker first announced the $ 10 million small business stimulus loan fund Monday, claiming that a qualifying business or nonprofit could get a low-interest loan of up to $ 75,000.
While the CRJM will no longer accept new applications for the fund, state officials are encouraging small business owners who find it difficult to apply for a federal disaster loan through the Small Business Administration. Federal agency approved Baker’s request for declaration of economic damage, allowing businesses and nonprofits in Massachusetts to apply for a federal disaster loan.
Small businesses and qualifying nonprofits – those with fewer than 50 full-time and part-time workers – can borrow up to $ 2 million from the federal government. The interest rate is 3.75% for qualifying businesses and 2.75% for qualifying non-profit organizations.
The state loan was supposed to be a temporary measure to help businesses find relief while the state files for an economic harm report from the Small Business Administration, state officials said. With the statement, the SBA can offer much larger loans to Bay State applicants who need them.
“The administration made the Small Business Recovery Loan Fund available as a bridging vehicle while Governor Baker’s request for a federal disaster declaration was being processed,” said Ryan Boehm, spokesperson for the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development in a statement. “Assistance is now available from the SBA through the Economic Disaster Loan Program, and we encourage financially affected small businesses and nonprofits to apply for these low interest loans to cope. to the disruptions caused by the current pandemic. “
Businesses across the state have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic and subsequent restrictions on public life. In Baker’s request to the SBA, he noted that a preliminary investigation by the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency revealed earlier this week that at least 700 businesses were affected by the response of the coronavirus.
Massachusetts officials reported the state’s first death from the virus Friday. At least 418 people in Massachusetts had the coronavirus as of Friday.