A recent collaboration between the York County Economic Alliance and the EDC Finance Co. could make it easier for small local businesses to find funding.
"Our mission is focused on creating and retaining jobs. We will bring any tools we can to our York County companies to help facilitate that growth," said Kenetha Hansen, vice president of economic development at York County Economic Development Corp.
With the Lancaster-based EDC Finance Co. serving as a conduit to provide funding through the Small Business Administration 504 program, the YCEA will be a "one-stop shop for businesses in York County," Hansen said.
The SBA 504 program provides small and medium-sized businesses with the long-term, fixed-rate financing that is typically available to larger businesses. Access to that funding can help a company create jobs and expand its facilities, she said.
"The Economic Alliance already offers opportunities to help local businesses leverage state funding. SBA funds will really enhance that," she said.
Businesses send the YCEA hundreds of inquiries a year, seeking funding, she said. Needs range from a couple thousand dollars to $20 million or more to help grow the county's companies.
Local impact: The Economic Alliance then asks questions to determine which economic programs will best fit a company's financial needs, she said.
"Most state programs won't fund retail and commercial businesses, but the SBA program will," she said.
EDC Finance has already funded four York County projects with SBA funds, including Byron Kehr's recent purchase of the historic Roosevelt Tavern on North Penn Street in the city, according to David Nikoloff, president of EDC Finance.
And that list can easily grow because the SBA program isn't funded by a pot of money, Hansen said. Instead, it is supported by unsecured bonds sold to investors.
"The businesses of York County will now have more access to the funding they need to grow their businesses and create new opportunities," said Darrell Auterson, president and CEO of the Economic Alliance.
-- Candy Woodall can also be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.