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OVER 50 SMALL BUSINESSES APPROVED FOR SHORT-TERM, EMERGENCY LOANS

 OVER 50 SMALL BUSINESSES APPROVED FOR SHORT-TERM, EMERGENCY LOANS
 MIAMI, Sept. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- Fifty-four owners of South Florida small businesses damaged by Hurricane Andrew have been approved for interest-free, short-term loans from a $10 million state-funded program administered by The Beacon Council, Dade County's business development organization.
 More than 400 completed applications are being reviewed by a loan committee made up of Miami area bankers and community leaders. Approved applicants are being notified within three business days after submitting completed applications.
 Several hundred other business owners are expected to submit loan applications after meeting this week with officials from participating banks and other financial institutions at The Beacon Council's offices, located in the World Trade Plaza, 80 SW 8th St., Suite 2400, Miami, and at 17 other sites in Dade County.
 Gov. Lawton Chiles announced the short-term loan program, an emergency appropriation from the state's working capital fund, on Sept. 4. The program, which provides loans between $5,000 and $25,000 for up to 180 days, is sponsored by the Florida Department of Commerce.
 A high percentage of loans that have been approved are for 90 days, said John Hall, Beacon Council Vice President of Minority Business and Development and coordinator of the zero-percent loan program. When repaid in December, money from those loans will go back into the $10 million pool and can be lent to other businesses damaged by Andrew.
 Applications are being accepted through Dec. 31, 1992.
 To be eligible for a loan from the emergency fund, a business must:
 -- Be based in Dade County or another Florida county affected by
 Hurricane Andrew and be able to produce records that certify its
 operations were directly affected by the storm.
 -- Employ between two and 100 people.
 --Be in business a minimum of two years (some exceptions will be
 granted for businesses that are one-year old.)
 For additional information about the zero-percent emergency loan program, including a list of sites where applications are being accepted, call The Beacon Council's Business Assistance Hotline at 305-536-8006.
 -0- 9/11/92
 /CONTACT: Steve Albee or Mary Di Landro of The Beacon Council, 305-536-8000/ CO: The Beacon Council ST: Florida IN: SU:


AW-JB -- FL018 -- 8680 09/11/92 17:31 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 11, 1992
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