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Small business lending took a huge hit during the financial crisis, but is slowly on the mend. And now that the Treasury Department is pitching in, a complete turnaround may be seen even sooner.
The Treasury announced Tuesday that it has approved three states--Connecticut, Missouri and Vermont--for a combined $53.4 million in funds, which it estimates will generate more than $534 million overall in small business lending.
Want a piece of that? Or want to know if your state will receive funds? Here's the deal.
The funds are part of the Small Business Credit Initiative, which is a component of the Small Business Jobs Act from last year. States can apply to fund state-run programs that offer small business lending in conjunction with private lenders. To receive funds, a state must show that every $1 in federal money will be matched by at least $10 in private lending.
To find out if your state applied for a grant--or the final destination of the money provided to Connecticut, Missouri and Vermont--contact your state's economic development agency. Officials should be able to tell you whether they applied for a grant and, if so, for which programs. They should also be able to give you a timeframe in which you must apply for small business lending.
If you find out that your state failed to apply for money, all hope is not lost. The Treasury Department will accept applications from municipalities if they are able to meet requirements. Your municipality should have a similar economic development agency or business organization, which would be the place to start.