Small businesses adversely affected by COVID-19 are being offered a new resource by the city of Columbia's Housing Programs Division in the form of a Small Business Recovery Loan Program.

Locally-owned small businesses with six to 49 employees are now eligible for grant funding. Eligible businesses could receive a $15,000 forgivable loan to cover various COVID-19-related costs, including business interruptions, adaptations and resiliency expenses, which refers to a business's capacity to absorb stress and thrive in difficult circumstances.

The Small Business Recovery Loan Program application portal will be open to applicants as of Oct. 29 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

According to the city's website, they are not currently accepting applications for the Microenterprise Recovery Loan Program, which is meant for businesses with five or fewer employees.

Employee income certification forms, which are a requirement of applying for the loan program, may be downloaded via the city's community development portal prior to the application portal opening.

A nonprofit community partner of the city of Columbia, the Missouri Women's Business Center is partnering with the city to help small businesses navigate technical issues during the application process.

An outline of the loan program's guidelines and required application materials are accessible via the city's website.

  • Public life reporter, fall 2020. Studying magazine/environmental journalism. Reach me at cperrett@mail.missouri.edu or in the newsroom at 882-5720

  • Molly Hart is an assistant city editor at the Missourian. She has previously reported on state government. She can be reached at mhart@mail.missouri.edu.

  • Mark Horvit is the state government editor. Call me at 817-726-1621 with story ideas, tips or complaints.

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