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Local Incentive

HELP for Small Business

Incentive Type
Local Incentive
Summary

In trying times such as the COVID-19 pandemic, the Harlingen EDC has taken the necessary steps to ensure the continued success of our local businesses. Since the program’s launch in May of 2020, it has aided more than 50 local businesses in retaining more than 400 full-time equivalent jobs. Industries that have received HELP include local restaurants, salons, and spa and massage establishments. 

Since the program’s launch in May of 2020, it has aided more than 50 local businesses in retaining more than 400 full-time equivalent jobs. Industries that have received HELP include local restaurants, salons, and spa and massage establishments. 

How it works:

  • Business owners must apply online here to begin the application process.

  • Loans will range in value up to $10,000 and will be approved based on such factors as need, location, planning, eligibility and availability of funds.

  • Funds may be used for expenditures which could include payroll costs, rent, utilities, cost of goods sold, inventory, and other ordinary costs of doing business as outlined in the HELP program guidelines.

Repayment terms:

  • Repayment of loan will begin one year after disbursement of funds, as set out in loan documents.

  • Payments will be amortized over a period of 36 to 60 months based on the borrower’s ability to pay.

  • A personal guaranty signed by the applicant/owners of the business will be required for this loan program.

Eligibility:

In order to qualify for a HELP loan of up to $10,000, a business applicant must:

  • Be located within the Harlingen City limits.

  • Not be a home-based business.  In other words, must have a commercial site within the city limits of Harlingen

  • Show a loss of revenues greater than 10% during this crisis period versus last year or if a new business, versus the previous 6-month average, or the business could provide evidence of extreme hardship.

  • Have 50 or fewer full time equivalent* employees in Harlingen.

  • Commit to staying in Harlingen.

Filing Requirements:

  • Completed online HELP Application

  • Complete copies, including all schedules, of the most recent Federal income tax returns for the applicant business; an explanation if not available.

  • Personal Financial Statement completed, signed and dated by the applicant (if a sole proprietorship), each principal owning 20 percent or more of the applicant business, and each general partner or managing member. 

  • Schedule of Liabilities listing all fixed debts.

  • Profit and loss statements or other documentation showing a financial loss of 10% or more during the period from March 1, 2020 through the date of the application or Monthly Sales Figures beginning 3 years prior, if applicable, to the disaster and continuing through the most recent month available. 

  • A narrative of the economic need and proposed use of funds.

Documents:

  • Complete copies, including all schedules, of the most recent Federal income tax returns for the applicant business; an explanation if not available.

  • Personal Financial Statement completed, signed and dated by the applicant (if a sole proprietorship), each principal owning 20 percent or more of the applicant business, and each general partner or managing member.

  • Schedule of Liabilities listing all fixed debts.

  • Profit and loss statements or other documentation showing a financial loss of 10% or more during the period from March 1, 2020 through the date of the application or Monthly Sales Figures beginning 3 years prior, if applicable, to the disaster and continuing through the most recent month available.

  • Other documentation deemed as necessary by the HELP Committee or HEDC staff

In order to qualify for a HELP loan of up to $10,000, a business applicant must:

  1. Have applied for an EIDL (Economic Injury Disaster Loan) with the Small Business Administration (SBA), or

  2. Have applied for a PPP (Paycheck Protection Program) loan through a local lender; and

  3. Has not taken the loan or has not received funding, or

  4. If the applicant did take an EIDL or PPP loan, then the applicant must substantiate the need for more funding in an explanation in the narrative section of the application.

The applicant must also:

  • Show a loss of revenues greater than 10% during this crisis period versus last year,

  • or if it is a new business, show a loss of revenues greater than 10% versus the previous 6-month average of monthly sales, or

  • Provide evidence of extreme hardship, and

  • Have 50 or fewer full-time equivalent* employees working in Harlingen as of March 1, 2020, and

  • Commit to staying in Harlingen throughout the term of the loan