FITCHBURG — As countless members of the community step up to contribute their talent to flood relief, the North Central Mass. Chamber of Commerce is doing what they know best by looking out for local businesses. On Friday, they announced emergency loans that will be available to fix flood damage at local businesses.
As the economic development arm of the Chamber, the North Central Mass. Development Corp. (NCMDC) launched the North Central Emergency Relief Loan program to extend assistance to those businesses directly affected by last week’s flood.
The program provides up to $10,000 with a 1% interest rate and all fees waived for eligible businesses and offers an expedited approval process with a quick closing. Loans are available up to six months interest only or deferred payments, then up to a 36-month repayment term with no pre-payment penalty.
Businesses meeting the loan program criteria can expect to receive funding within two weeks of a completed application.
“We expect some small businesses will need access to immediate funds as they work on remediation efforts or experience closures for an extended period of time while they recover from the historic floods our region faced on Sept. 11,” said Roy Nascimento, president and CEO of the North Central Massachusetts Chamber and North Central Massachusetts Development Corporation. “With the support of our board of directors and the hard work of our staff, we wanted to provide an option for our affected businesses to ensure they are back up and running as quickly as possible.”
Businesses eligible for the North Central Emergency Relief Loan program must have been in operation at the time of the disaster, with funding utilized for losses caused by the flooding in North Central Massachusetts and for flood remediation expenses. Businesses meeting the loan program criteria can expect to receive funding in as quickly as one week of a completed application.
“Should businesses incur expenses above and beyond this loan, we can work with them using our traditional loan programs and full underwriting practices,” said Nascimento.
Assistance in recovery efforts is also available through the North Central Massachusetts Chamber of Commerce, which reactivated its dedicated email helpline at firstname.lastname@example.org for businesses to contact with requests for immediate assistance.
Additionally, an online resources page has been developed at northcentralmass.com/flood-resources providing the latest guidance and resources from local, state, and federal authorities when it becomes available. The Chamber is committed to keeping its members and the public informed and will be posting on the website as well as its various social media platforms as new information becomes available.
For additional information or questions about the North Central Emergency Relief Loan program, please contact 978.353.7607 or visit www.choosenorthcentral.com.