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A $500K jumpstart

Staunton loan funds available for qualifying small businesses

Staff Report
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The Staunton Creative Community Fund announced today that it is beginning the New Year with funding available for small businesses that tops half a million dollars.

SCCF will loan the money to qualified entrepreneurs to attract new and existing small businesses to the Shenandoah Valley, which is anticipated to spur significant local job creation.

The Staunton-based nonprofit business loan program includes the previously announced SPARC PLUG loan fund, a new $98,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Business Enterprise Grant Program, and a $250,000 loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration Microloan Program. All of these funds will be available to small businesses in the form of business loans up to $35,000 that fund startup costs, expansion, job creation and retention, marketing, and other key business activities.

SCCF can assist entrepreneurs through both direct lending and by partnering with their existing commercial lenders to enhance overall funding availability.

“We predict that 2010 will be the year of Small Businesses in the Valley,” said Meghan Williamson, SCCF’s executive director. “With a national economy that has slowed the pace of major development projects everywhere, job creation and economic growth remain strongest among start-up and entrepreneurial small businesses.”

Arriving on the tail of the City of Staunton’s designation as a Virginia Enterprise Zone, community development officials are confident that this announcement will encourage additional entrepreneurial and small business growth.

“The City of Staunton has built a comprehensive program to attract, retain, and grow dynamic small businesses,” said Bill Hamilton, Staunton’s director of economic development and also president of SCCF. “The Staunton Creative Community Fund now offers significant funding to support start-up and expansionary costs, helping small businesses succeed, create jobs, and expand the local economy.”

 


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