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City, TEDC Launch Resilience and Recovery Fund; Zero Interest Loans Offered to Businesses Affected by COVID-19

This article was archived on 8/29/2020

In partnership with Tulsa Economic Development Corporation (TEDC), the City of Tulsa is dedicating $1.1 million in funds for zero interest loans to provide financial assistance to small business owners and entrepreneurs affected by COVID-19.

TEDC will begin accepting loan applications from local businesses immediately. Businesses can apply at: www.TEDCNet.com. For additional questions, call TEDC at (918) 585-8332.

To qualify, a small business applicant must have fewer than 50 full-time equivalent (FTE) employees, have 2019 revenues that did not exceed $5,000,000 and have experienced a decrease in revenue of at least 25 percent between February and March 2020 due to COVID-19.  

“Small business owners and employees throughout Tulsa are sacrificing in order to save the lives of our neighbors. This program is a critical stop-gap for those businesses until federal funding that is in the pipeline can reach them,” Mayor G.T. Bynum said. “At the City of Tulsa, we are evaluating any and all ideas to support local businesses throughout this pandemic event.”

The Resilience and Recovery Fund will lend up to $50,000 to qualifying businesses and entrepreneurs. Loans can be used for a wide variety of things, including but not limited to; payroll, insurance premiums, bridge loans, etc.

“Small businesses across the city have suffered one of the biggest economic shocks in our city’s history – and through no fault of their own,” said Kian Kamas, the City’s Chief of Economic Development. “In the face of this shock, they have been innovative, caring, and selfless. They have shown the true character of what it means to be a Tulsan. Coupled with federal programs created in the CARES Act, this Fund will provide critical capital that will help these businesses weather the current crisis.”

The Fund will serve as a critical capital source for smaller businesses with limited history and credit, and also serve as a stop gap measure for businesses intending to pursue SBA funding in the coming weeks.

“TEDC is honored to be on the front line giving small businesses in Tulsa a sense of relief through these uncertain times,” TEDC CEO Rose Washington said. “Our ongoing partnership with the City of Tulsa has allowed us to switch gears quickly. We have been able to shift from providing loans to start-ups and growing businesses, to giving existing companies access to creative capital for recovery. Our team is providing expedited loan funding while also learning and sharing guidance on new SBA programs. Small businesses continue to be our #1 Priority!”

Developed on research on best practices deployed nationally in response to COVID-19, the fund builds on the City’s existing partnership with TEDC, which utilizes Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds to increase access to capital for underserved businesses.

In addition to this program, the City is in the process of evaluating additional, immediate and long-term economic response efforts and program needs while also exploring non-financial sources of aid, such as technical assistance.

As part of the loan program, the George Kaiser Family Foundation will provide added technical support with TEDC to help non-profits and small businesses navigate federal, state and local stimulus dollars. Businesses and non-profits that want help navigating the various funding streams can visit,www.TulsaResponds.org where they will be connected with a trusted individual to walk through the qualifications and process to apply.

“TEDC and Rose Washington are a trusted community partner in Tulsa and we know that with the dollars the City is announcing today in addition to the federal stimulus package, TEDC will need more hands-on deck to ensure broad access to this capital,” Suzanne Schreiber with the George Kaiser Family Foundation said. “GKFF is pleased to provide the extra support for counseling and navigation regarding these funds.  Many thanks to the Mayor, his team and TEDC for their leadership and hard work now and always.” 

This program will be one piece of a comprehensive strategy the City is undertaking to ensure Tulsa businesses are successful and our economy recovers as quickly as possible.

Based on demand, the City will consider whether the Resilience and Recovery Fund should be expanded in size and scope.

For a list of FAQs and the most up-to-date COVID-19 information and business supports, visit www.cityoftulsa.org/COVID-19.