Fairfax County, VA – Today, Fairfax County launched a “micro” loan program to assist resident small businesses in meeting basic operational needs during the COVID-19 crisis. The $2.5 million fund was approved by the Board of Supervisors earlier this month, and will offer up to $20,000 in 0% interest loans for eligible small businesses in Fairfax County to cover expenses such as working capital, equipment, rent, debt payments, and other operating expenses. The program is administered by the Community Business Partnership (CPB) of Springfield. Since demand is expected to exceed available resources, the County will hold a digital lottery on May 1 to determine which businesses can participate in the program. Here are the basics:
Who’s Eligible: Any for-profit business in Fairfax County that has fewer than 50 employees, has been in operation for at least two years, and has a valid business license can apply. Businesses located in the Cities of Alexandria, Arlington, and Fairfax are not eligible. In addition, home-based businesses, sole-proprietorships, seasonal businesses, franchisees (with some exceptions), and businesses that sell items to age-restricted individuals (beer/wine retailers, tobacco stores, etc.) are ineligible.
Loan Terms: Interest-free loans of up to $20,000 are available. The loans must be repaid over a period of six years, and payments can be deferred for up to six months. A personal guaranty must be offered as collateral, as well as a lien against the business license.
How to Apply: Interested businesses must first submit an “Eligibility Form” through the CPB website at: https://cbponline.org/financing/fairfax-microloan-program/. The eligibility form must be submitted by midnight on Thursday, April 30. On May 1, the County will conduct a “digital lottery” to assign a random, computer-generated number to each eligible business that submitted an application. Invitations to apply for the loans will be issued in the order of the assigned lottery numbers until resources are exhausted.
Remember, there is a brief window in which eligible businesses can apply, so I urge all small businesses interested in accessing this resource to apply today.