Newark DRI

A look at Newark’s South Main Street last fall following the reconstruction project.

LYONS — Wayne County Economic Development Director Brian Pincelli knows these are tough times for local businesses suffering under the shutdown caused by the coronavirus outbreak.

While many county industries were allowed to remain open during the New York State on Pause, others considered non-essential under Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s order are just ramping up. Still others are waiting to open under the next phases of the reopening plan.

Pincelli said Wayne County Economic Development and Planning “has been closely monitoring the current situation and are actively working to share information and provide guidance for our local small businesses.”

He noted that the U.S. Small Business Administration has been offering assistance through the Payroll Protection Program and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program, both of which are designed to help businesses maintain payroll and help in their recovery from the coronavirus shutdown, which has led to record job losses across the nation.

“I applaud the SBA on their quickness to get assistance programs out there, and can appreciate the work involved in quickly responding, as well as the massive amount of work to accept, process and approve funding,” said Pincelli.

But there is local help available as well, he pointed out.

Pincelli said the Wayne Economic Development Corporation has existing loan programs to assist county businesses.

“These are not new programs but are available to help in economic recovery and to bridge the gap in getting back to economic stability,” he said.

Businesses can take out loans for up to $150,000, with up to 10 years to pay them back, he said. The money can be used for working capital, inventory purchases, machinery and equipment, furniture, fixtures, supplies, building renovations and more. The loans currently have a fixed interest rate of 3.25 percent, and the agency is currently waiving application fees while attempting to minimize closing costs. The EDC reviews loan applications on a rolling basis, Pincelli added.

Here are some tips from Pincelli for small businesses experiencing challenges:

• If you haven’t already, apply to the SBA PPP program, he said, adding that it’s “still your best source for funding assistance, given the opportunity for forgiveness.” New guidelines removing some restrictions on use of funds were recently released and can be found at https://www.sba.gov/document/sba-form--paycheck-protection-program-loan-forgiveness-application.

{div}• If you are an agricultural business, consider applying for the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program. The application can be found at https://covid19relief.sba.gov/#/.{/div}

• Start your plan. Guidance that is industry specific as well as a safety plan template can be found at https://forward.ny.gov/industries-reopening-phase.

• Stay connected. Review the Economic Development and Planning Department’s website, https://web.co.wayne.ny.us/index.php/wayne-county-economic-development-planning-landing/, and its social media resources. “We are updating our website daily with new updates regarding loans, grants and reopening guidance,” he said.

• If federal assistance programs are not working for you, said Pincelli, “reach out to us and let’s see if we can help. The SBA is working daily to get as much assistance out as they can. Try and be patient. We are more than willing to discuss your situation and discuss how we can get you through this difficult time.”

• Share your thoughts and concerns in a survey on Economic Development and Planning’s website. “We are trying to gauge the needs of local businesses in the light of COVID-19 and to explore opportunities to assist local business,” he said.

For more information, contact Business Outreach Coordinator Tanya Hasseler at (315) 946-5975 or email THasseler@co.wayne.ny.us.

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