With the coronavirus still in full swing and so many individuals and communities continuing to suffer, any assistance that is offered is very welcome. Our Mayor – Eric Garcetti – just announced more funds to be put into the fiscal recovery program. He said:
“We are investing an additional $10 million this evening in funds for the LA Regional COVID-19 recovery program. This comes on top of an existing $3 million pot already dedicated to this initiative. We now will be able to offer grants, not loans, but grants to the small businesses and nonprofits that are the lifeblood of our economy. And this funding is designed specifically to assist out most vulnerable businesses who did not get served by our federal Paycheck Protection Program. Maybe because they’re underbanked, maybe because they didn’t have the staff, but we know too many small businesses, especially on our main streets, Black-owned businesses and immigrant-owned businesses, women-owned businesses and family-owned businesses were not helped enough.”
It is hoped that this aid will help more small business stay in operation and thus limit those losing their jobs.
To date, over $53.4m has been given to over 500 small businesses in loans thanks to the California Credit Union which has gotten the money through the SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). It has been estimated that this money has managed to save (or repair) around 5,000 southern Californian jobs. According to Steve O’Connell, President and CEO of the California Credit Union:
“Small local businesses are the backbone of our economy, and the SBA program has been an absolute lifeline to help these businesses survive the pandemic. When the program launched, our team immediately jumped into action, working seven days a week to help them access these funds, which in many cases were the only option to keep their doors open, the lights on, and staff on payroll. To meet demand, we redeployed and trained staff from other credit union areas, who have worked around the clock to assist members and submit applications. We continue to receive letters and emails from local businesses thanking us for our help, which show us the real impact this program is having in supporting the financial health of our communities. As a preferred SBA lender, we’ve been committed to serving businesses in our communities since 2008 with our business banking services. We are fortunate to have the business banking expertise and infrastructure in place to rally our resources, move quickly to make the application live as soon as it was launched, and help our business members access the program in both rounds.”
For sure there are still many – too many – who have lost their jobs or businesses, but this is a start.