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Monday, July 18, 2016

Growing Atlantic County Small Businesses for Success

Looking to start or grow a small business but not sure you have the money to do so without raiding your life savings or remortgaging your home?

Consider two business loan programs currently being administered by the Atlantic County Improvement Authority (ACIA) that enable communities to leverage their Community Development Block Grant funds into federally guaranteed loans to promote job creation and economic revitalization.

“Small companies can create jobs and grow their businesses through the use of these loans,” stated County Executive Dennis Levinson. “They offer opportunities that are often unavailable for start-ups and new small businesses that fail to qualify for traditional bank loans due to lack of experience and a proven track record.”

Shirley Corsey, owner of SC Consultant, LLC in Linwood and a state certified training provider, plans to hire and train five new employees to become certified medical billing specialists with a $35,000 micro loan.

Corsey first learned of the micro loan program last September after attending a kickoff event for the county’s economic development strategy and action plan. Upon hearing of an increased need for job training in this area, she made the decision to grow her business in Atlantic County with the benefit of this attractive loan.

The Micro Loan Program offers loans between $1,000 and $35,000 to start-up businesses that meet the HUD criteria of low to moderate income. Preference is given to borrowers with at least six months to one year experience. Fifty-one percent of an applicant’s new hires should be of low to moderate income and should preferably live within Atlantic County. A non-refundable $100 administrative fee is required at time of loan processing.

The 108 Loan Program can provide for-profit businesses with loans up to 40 percent of the project cost at a maximum of $400,000 with repayment terms of 10-20 years. One job must be created for every $35,000 spent. A non-refundable $200 application fee is required.

Both loan programs are available to businesses located in municipalities that participate in the Community Development Block Grant as well as Atlantic City.

For more information about these loan programs, please visit www.atlanticcountyimprovementauthority.org or call Max Slusher, ACIA Economic Development Director, at (609) 343-2157.

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