Kettering launches loan program to help small businesses during pandemic

Kettering’s Planning and Development Department has developed an emergency business loan program in response to the impact of COVID-19 on local businesses. FILE
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Kettering’s Planning and Development Department has developed an emergency business loan program in response to the impact of COVID-19 on local businesses. FILE

Kettering’s Planning and Development Department has created an emergency business loan program in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on local businesses.

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City leaders have recognized a need to reach out to retail, commercial and entertainment businesses that rely on customers making purchases at their establishments, but that are struggling since the stay-at-home order has been put in place.

City spokeswoman Mary Azbill explained that the COVID-19 relief loan program is designed to provide assistance to those types of businesses that can demonstrate a hardship caused by the virus outbreak.

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Azbill explained that the loan program is not something on a large financial scale, but hopefully will provide needed fiscal relief to the small business owner.

“The City of Kettering Business Assistance Program - COVID-19 Emergency Loan Program is intended help the small business owner during this crisis,” she said. “The loan is small but will hopefully will give a small business time and retain jobs until more substantial programs become available through the SBA.”

Kettering’s COVID-19 Emergency Loan Program will provide micro-loans to businesses with 25 or fewer employees, and the funding must be earmarked to pay for normal businesses expenses that have been made more difficult due to declining revenues caused by the coronavirus crisis.

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Businesses may apply for up to $5,000 in funds, according to Planning and Development Director, Tom Robillard.

“Applicants must have a physical location in Kettering and have experienced a loss of income due to COVID-19. Funding is limited, and applications will be accepted on a rolling basis,” he said.

The COVID-19 emergency loans provided by the city are forgivable loans that will have a three-year term at a zero-percent interest rate.

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“If your business is able to retain at least one low or moderate income employee for the first three months after the receipt of loan funds, then the loan will be completely forgiven,” Robillard said, adding that the lack of verifiable documentation will prevent the loan from being forgiven.

Repayment of the load will be deferred for the first 12-month period after the loan is administered. Businesses will begin monthly loan repayments on month 13. After repayment begins, businesses shall have two years to complete full repayment of the loan.

The loan review process will be handled by city staff, and those businesses interested in applying can contact Angela Brown at 937-296-2524 or by email at angela.brown@ketteringoh.org.

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HOW TO APPLY

Kettering’s COVID-19 Emergency Loan Program will provide micro-loans up to $5,000 at a zero-percent interest rate to businesses with 25 or fewer employees, and the funding must be earmarked to pay for normal businesses expenses that have been made more difficult due to declining revenues caused by the coronavirus crisis.

The loan review process will be handled by city staff, and those businesses interested in applying can contact Angela Brown at 937-296-2524 or by email at angela.brown@ketteringoh.org.