Pennsylvania to Establish Small Business Loan Program for Businesses Impacted by COVID-19

On March 25, 2020, Governor Tom Wolf announced a $60 million COVID-19 Working Capital Access Program (CWCA), administered by the Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority (PIDA), to provide loans of up to $100,000 for small businesses within the Commonwealth adversely impacted by the COVID-19 epidemic.

Pennsylvania businesses with 100 or fewer full-time employees worldwide are eligible to apply. The maximum amount of the loan is $100,000 to be used for working capital, excluding fixed assets and production machinery and equipment. The interest rate of the loan is zero percent (0%) except for agricultural producers, in which case the interest rate is two percent (2%). The term of each loan is 3 years, with a 12-year amortization. The Commonwealth states that no payments will be due and payable during the first year, with principal (and interest, if applicable) due in monthly installments during years 2 and 3, with a balloon payment due and payable at the end of the third year. The loan would be secured by a blanket lien on all business assets and must be guaranteed by any individual or entity with a 20% or greater ownership interest in the eligible business receiving the loan.

There is no match required except for retail/service enterprises, in which case the CWCA can finance up to 50% of eligible working capital costs up to $100,000. Such retail/service enterprises are defined as a for-profit business entities that are involved in the business-to-business service, business to-public service, mercantile, commercial, or point of sale retail sectors. There are no job retention or job creation requirements.

Loan applications are made through the Certified Economic Development Organization (CEDO) that services the county in which the business is located. The CEDO will work with the business to determine if the CWCA loan program can assist with financing the needs of the business and assist in the application process.

A list of CEDOs is available at http://dced.pa.gov/programs/covid-19-working-capital-access-program-cwca/.