County accepting applications for forgivable loans

County accepting  applications for  forgivable loansKern County announced Tuesday that they are now accepting applications for “Kern Recovers” — a program to issue $25 million in forgivable loans to small businesses that have experienced hardship from COVID-19 closures and other safety measures.

“We recognize that our local small businesses have been hit extremely hard by COVID-19 and our goal is to help alleviate some of that strain where possible,” said Jim Zervis, Kern chief operations officer.

“We’re proud to roll this program out [this week] and our goal is to get funding to businesses as quickly as possible while maintaining an appropriate level of transparency and accountability.”

The program is funded through the county’s $157 appropriation from the CARES Act, which congress passed in March to provide coronavirus relief. On May 19, the Kern County Board of Supervisors approved the allocation for Kern Recovers to assist businesses that were negatively impacted during the pandemic, but did not qualify for other forms of federal aid.

Mission Bank and AltaOne Federal Credit Union are partnering with the county to accept applications. Applicants must be located within Kern County and have fewer than 50 employees and less that $5 million in annual revenue.

Small businesses are be eligible for up to $75,000 in forgivable loans. Approved funding must be used for 34 percent of loan amount for payroll, up to 33 percent of loan amount for rent/utilities/mortgage interest, and up to 33 percent of loan amount for general working capital.

Story First Published: 2020-05-29