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NM firms urged to apply quickly for loans

Alicia Keyes

RIO RANCHO, N.M. — New Mexico businesses hit hard by COVID-19 shutdowns are being encouraged to apply soon for loans under the federal stimulus bill.

The stimulus bill, or Cares Act, allocates $349 billion for loans to small businesses, according to a release from the Governor’s Office. However, businesses have until only June 30 to access the money, with loans being made on a “first-come, first-served basis.”

“This money will go quickly, and New Mexico small businesses must act as soon as possible to obtain loans,” Economic Development Secretary Alicia Keyes said in the release. “Many businesses struggling through this crisis need a financial bridge to help them survive and recover once this crisis eases.”

The release says there are two loan programs for small businesses under the stimulus bill: the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program, in which a small business can borrow up to $2 million with an immediate grant advance up to $10,000 distributed in three days, and the Paycheck Protection Program, in which a small business can borrow up to $10 million at an interest rate of 1%.

According to the release, the Paycheck Protection Program loan is deferrable for six months and can be forgiven by the U.S. Small Business Administration if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest or utilities.

Small businesses can apply for the loans through the SBA at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela or through the SBA’s Small Business Development Centers at www.nmsbdc.org.

The release says that in addition to the loans made available under the stimulus bill, the New Mexico Economic Development Department also has created loan-guarantee and no-interest loan programs for businesses. For more information, go to https://gonm.biz.

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