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Nearly Half a Million in HELP for Small Business funds disbursed; More money Still Available

HARLINGEN, TEXAS (Aug. 18, 2020) – The HELP for Small Business committee reviewed a sixth round of loan applications last week and approved six local businesses for the loan.

The small business owners were approved on Aug. 10 and received the maximum amount of $10,000. Businesses included local restaurants, salons, and spa and massage establishments.

Raudel Garza, Harlingen EDC CEO, reminds Harlingen-based business owners that the program will continue until the allotted $1 million funds are used, or the program is discontinued.

Since the program launched on May 1 more than 50 local businesses have been approved. HELP for Small Business can be credited with giving business owners the opportunity to retain more than 400 full-time equivalent jobs.

“The HEDC and the City started this program to reach those in need and we are doing that,” Garza said.

“This program is also helping us connect better with the small businesses here. Many of them are understanding the resources available to them through the HEDC.”

Small business owners are still encouraged to apply if they believe they meet the qualifications.

“We’re trying to pick up where the federal government left off for Harlingen businesses,” Harlingen EDC Board President, Eric Ziehe, said recently.

“We really want to see them succeed – we want to see all businesses in Harlingen succeed.”

Ziehe added that he encourages more Harlingen business owners to take advantage of the program and apply.

Receiving funds from federal resources such as a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) or an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) does not disqualify business owners from these local funds if they show a bigger financial need.

“It’s a great opportunity to help your business to continue growing,” Jerry Gonzalez, Papa Joes Burger & Brew owner, said. Gonzalez recently received HELP for Small Business funds.

“We’re going through tough times. Everybody should take advantage of this program. This is going to help us for our restaurant expenses like rent, payroll, and the essentials for the business.”