With many Merrimack Valley business owners still without gas and unable to reopen nearly two weeks after the gas explosions and fires ripped through three towns, a new program will offer emergency loans to help get businesses open and employees back to work.
The $1 million emergency loan fund will offer businesses funding with no payments or interest due for the first six months. Loans will also be eligible to be extended at market rates or restructured for longer terms.
Governor Charlie Baker announced the new initiative Friday with Lawrence Mayor Daniel Rivera, Andover Town Manager Andrew Flanagan and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito.
“Local businesses are the bedrock of our economy and are in dire need of solutions to make sure they can stay in business and continue to provide good paying jobs, and we are grateful for the regional lenders that have come together to support this important effort,” Baker said.
Here at Papi's Variety in Lawrence with @MassLtGov, @JayAshEOHED, @danrivera01843, @Town_Mgr_Maylor, and officials from @AndoverMaGov to announce a $1,000,000 emergency loan fund for businesses directly impacted by the recent gas explosions in the Merrimack Valley. #MVGasFire pic.twitter.com/K3YUPyShu4— Charlie Baker (@MassGovernor) September 28, 2018
The fund will open October 1 and have an expedited application and approval process, with the goal of getting all applications processed within 24 and 48 hours.
Mass Growth Capital Corporation, Lawrence Partnership and ten lenders involved with the Lawrence Venture Loan Fund and Mill Cities Community Investments (MCCI) are collectively working together to create the program
"Businesses in Lawrence, Andover and North Andover find themselves in a situation they did not create but nonetheless are victims of,” said Lawrence Mayor Daniel Rivera. “With this fund being created, we don't intend to solve all of their problems, but we hope this provides some much needed relief. I'd like to publicly thank the Governor Baker’s team, MCCI and the 10 banks that have stepped up to help business in the three communities with the creation of this fund.”
FOR ASSISTANCE: Visit the Emergency Business Loan Fund website
WHO QUALIFIES: Any business that has been impacted by the recent gas disaster will qualify for the funds, including businesses from Lawrence, Andover, and N. Andover.
TERMS/RATES: this fund is being offered with no payments and no interest for the first 6 months. For businesses that extend beyond a 6 month period, market rates will apply and loans can be extended or restructured for multi-year term loans. Businesses can apply for up to $50,000. There is no minimum loan amount.
APPLICATION PROCESS AND REQUIREMENTS: The fund is designed to create an expedited application and approval process, with the goal of getting all applications processed within 48 hours.
For a full listing of required documentation go to www.wearelawrence.org/lawrencegasresponsebusiness.
HOW TO APPLY: Mill Cities Community Investments will receive all applications for this fund and will process internally. They can be contacted by phone, email, or in-person at:
50 Island Street, Suite #103
Lawrence, MA 01840
Governor Baker speaking in Lawrence to announce help for small businesses affected by Merrimack Valley gas explosionsPosted by Boston 25 News on Friday, September 28, 2018
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