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Portland City Council voted Monday to approve three business loan and grant programs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The programs, intended to assist Portland businesses needing help; are the Business Assistance Program for Job Creation (Rehiring), the Microenterprise Grant Program and the Rapid Response Micro Loan Program, according to a news release.
The programs were designed by the Portland Development Corp. and the city’s Economic Development Department.
The city will seek Community Development Block Grant funding for the Business Assistance Program for Job Creation (Rehiring) and the Microenterprise Grant Program. The council may approve that funding at its May 18 meeting.
The Portland Rapid Response Micro Loan Program will be funded with $400,000 from the Portland Development Corp.’s unrestricted loan funds, with $250,000 focused on the first round of the program.
All three programs are expected to launch by May 19 with applications available on the city’s website that day. Click here for more information.
The city encourages businesses to make sure they have the necessary documents ready submit with their applications. The documents include a personal financial statement from all owners of the business with 20% ownership or greater; 2018 and 2019 business tax returns; balance sheet and profit-and-loss for 2019; and a payroll from Jan. 31, 2020, showing number of full and part-time employees at that time.
Business Assistance Program for Job Creation (Rehiring): Provides $5,000 in grant funding to small businesses for rehiring two or more full-time employees that were on the payroll as of Jan. 31. The jobs, which must be filled by low- or moderate-income individuals, could include previous employees or new employees. The program is not intended to substitute for available COVID-19 federal or state commercial financing programs if a business is able to access them. Funding through this program cannot be combined with any other Portland Development Corp. COVID-19 program.
Microenterprise Grant Program: Targeted to very small businesses with no more than one employee, this program will provide grants of up to $2,500 to existing Portland microenterprises that have been impacted by the COVID 19 crisis. The definition of a microenterprise, for the purposes of the program, is a business that has no more than one full-time equivalent employee, which could be one full-time or two part-time employees, as well as the business owner who must be a low- or moderate-income individual. Funding through this program cannot be combined with any other Portland Development Corp. COVID-19 Program.
Rapid Response Micro Loan Program: Targeted to small businesses that had two to eight employees on Jan. 31, this program will provide loans up to $10,000 with $5,000 forgiven if 50% of employees are hired back within nine months of signing a loan agreement or six months after the applicable stay-at-home or other COVID-19 emergency orders have been lifted with respect to the borrower’s type of business, whichever comes first. The program is not intended to substitute for available COVID-19 federal or state commercial financing if a business is able to access one or both. Funding through the program cannot be combined with any other Portland Development Corp. COVID-19 Program.
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