SBDC reaching out to small businesses in fire area

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The Small Business Development Center will provide assistance to the small businesses in Black Forest that are being harmed by the Black Forest fire.

smalldevcenter-1The SBDC will offer in-person assistance at the El Paso County Disaster Assistance Center, located at the El Paso County Citizens Service Center on 1675 Garden of the Gods Road. The center will be open starting today and remain open every day through Monday, June 17.

The assistance could include loans from the Pikes Peak Region Business Recovery Fund, available through a community collaboration of banks, the Colorado Springs Regional Busienss Alliance and community parnters. The loan program gives loans of up to $10,000 with no interest for a year, and 12 percent after a year. The loans are available for a three-year term, and businesses must show a 10 percent decrease in sales receipts for 2012 or 2013. Apply online at www.coloradoenterprisefund.org.

“The SBDC Disaster Relief Program has been an active program since the Waldo Canyon Fire in June of 2012,” said Aikta Marcoulier, executive director of the SBDC in Colorado Springs. “We have continued our work on Disaster Relief and Preparedness for businesses long after the ashes settled and are now extending our services and expertise to businesses affected by the Black Forest Fire. Our mission is to help small business recover and advance from both the Waldo Canyon Fire and Black Forest Fires.

The SBDC is also part of the Pikes Peak Region Business Recovery Team which continues to work to identify federal, state, local and private resources to assist small businesses in the wake of the Waldo Canyon Fire and now the Black Forest Fire. Through the efforts of the Pikes Peak Recovery Team and other community partners, Colorado Enterprise Fund was able to offer a special loan program, Fire Impact Recovery Effort (FIRE), dedicated to supporting and rebuilding small businesses in the Pikes Peak Region after the Waldo Canyon Fire. This loan program has now been extended to assist businesses affected by the Black Forest Fire. Contact Ingrid Wood, Disaster Relief Program Coordinator at 667-3812 for more information.