Five Long Island groups capable of helping small businesses to apply for federal disaster loans could share more than $500,000 in state funding, officials said.
The board of Empire State Development, the state’s primary business-aid agency, approved the funds as part of $7.5 million in COVID-19 Disaster Relief Technical Assistance Grants.
ESD CEO Eric J. Gertler said last week the agency is committed “to providing assistance for New York State businesses and to help revive the state’s economy” when the pandemic ends.
He said the state grants will support counselors who are aiding small business owners to seek disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration and other financial assistance. The counselors work at Small Business Development Centers, Entrepreneurship Assistance Centers and Community Development Financial Institutions across the state.
The centers and community development institutions have until April 10 at 3 p.m. to apply for the ESD grants.
On Long Island, there are Small Business Development Centers at Farmingdale State College and Stony Brook University and Entrepreneurship Assistance Centers at Hofstra University and Suffolk County Community College. Each could receive up to $110,000.
There’s one community development institution eligible to apply: La Fuerza Unida Community Development Corp. in East Norwich. It could receive up to $100,000 to help women- and minority-owned businesses.
Separately, the ESD board last week gave Gertler the authority for six months to unilaterally approve contracts up to $1 million for “COVID-19 pandemic relief assistance.” Previously, he was authorized to OK contracts valued at $250,000 or less without the board ratifying the decision.
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