Mayor London Breed Announces Expansion in Financial Relief for Small Businesses Impacted by COVID-19

AP Photo / Eric Risberg

Thursday, June 4th, Mayor London Breed and the Office of Economic and Workforce Development announced a second phase of $6.5 million funding to support over 300 small businesses.

According to Breed’s announcement, $5 million will go toward the Hardship Emergency Loan Program (SF HELP) and $1.5 million is dedicated to the San Francisco’s Small Business Resiliency Fund. In April, the city previously committed $10 million to the Small Business Relief Fund.

“The impact of COVID-19 on small businesses has been unprecedented and many challenges lay ahead as we take steps towards reopening, but I know that together this City can rise to meet this challenge,” said Mayor Breed. “Together with our community leaders, community organizations, and funding partners, we are responding to address the needs of our most vulnerable populations, our frontline workers, and small businesses.”

The announcement explains, “The San Francisco Resiliency Fund and SF HELP are programs designed to be flexible and low-risk to serve small businesses, sole proprietors, and independent contractors with little to no access to traditional credit in underserved communities. The programs are a result of public and private partnerships that leverage various resources, including the generous donations to the Give2SF COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund.”

You can donate to Give2SF here.

The second phase of the San Francisco Resiliency Fund grant program, providing up to $10,000 in aid to at least 190 businesses will total $1.5 million and help expenses such as payroll, rent, utilities or to supplement income due to a direct loss of business revenue.

The $5 million going toward SF HELP will provide up to $50,000 in zero interest loans to 110 small businesses. The organization provides flexible funding to businesses that are unable to apply for other government loan products. “This new round of SF HELP loans will be available in partnership with Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA), a nonprofit community partner. Through $1 million from Give2SF, MEDA was able to leverage and expand the loan program by $ 4 million through a finance tool with a state partnership. Currently, $3.5 million in loans are making its way to small businesses through community partner Main Street Launch.”

“The reality for small businesses in our City has changed dramatically and quickly. Most small businesses have a vastly diminished customer base, if they are able to continue operating at all. Many have had to lay off their workers, and business owners have had to go without pay themselves,” said Luis Granados, CEO, Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA). “MEDA’s Fondo Adelante, a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), is proud to partner with Mayor Breed, OEWD and the California I-Bank to put into action SF HELP — an equitable solution for quickly deploying financial assistance during this crisis.”

San Francisco is currently working to gain additional funds and will announce the next phase when it becomes available.

Read the full report, including additional information for small businesses here.

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