CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - The Berkeley Charleston Dorchester Council of Government was recently awarded $560,000 in Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act funding by the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration. The money will be used for the BCDCOG CARES Revolving Loan Fund.
The goal of the fund is to help with long-term, private-sector investment and employment in the region.
“This grant award will allow BCDCOG to effectively assist in the private-sector recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic and help create and retain job opportunities in the region,” BCDCOG Executive Director Ron Mitchum said. “The capitalization of the RLF is fully in line with the BCDCOG’s regional economic recovery strategy and a much-needed lifeline for businesses affected by COVID-19.”
Eligible businesses who need help should operate in Berkeley, Charleston or Dorchester counties and be able to provide evidence of revenue loss since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Business owners may apply for a one-year, interest-deferred and/or an interest-free loan ranging from $10,000-$100,000.
“Working to enhance the region is something that we do on multiple fronts," BCDCOG regional strategies Daniel Brock said. "And now we’re able to take federal resources awarded to the region and make sure they’re placed in the hands of the hard-working business owners who need them most.”
EDA is offering award flexibilities in response to the impact of COVID-19 and the need for RLFs to provide credit quickly and efficiently. These include:
- No minimum interest rate
- No requirement to leverage additional capital
- No requirement to demonstrate credit is otherwise not available
- Deferment of accrued interest
- Reduced or eliminated collateral requirements
Loan considerations and reduced associated costs include:
- Evidence of loss in revenue (strongly suggested)
- Years of business operation
- Employee retention plan
- Business sector
- $500 application fee (may be waived)
- Up to 1.5% origination fee
- 0.5% annual service fee