Brooklyn Center Offers Help to Small Businesses Impacted by COVID-19
Brooklyn Center is offering economic assistance to small businesses impacted by COVID-19. Some have closed and the city wants to keep them afloat.
“Nationwide small businesses have been hit really hard by this,” said Meg Beekman, Brooklyn Center’s community development director. “The fact is Brooklyn Center is home to a really high percentage of micro businesses. We want to make sure that we don’t leave behind any of those small businesses in our community that really have had to take quite a hit by being closed.”
Businesses can apply for a loan with 0% interest and no payment for 12 months. Brooklyn Center is accepting applications on a rolling basis until funds are gone. City officials are processing applications as fast as possible so they can get the money out quickly.
“There is this gap with higher barriers of entry,” Beekman said. “Particularly for minority-owned and women-owned businesses, which Brooklyn Center has a lot of. So in order to really meet that need and fill that gap we’ve created a program through the Economic Development Authority. It’s small, micro-forgivable loans up to $3,000 for small businesses that are located in the community that have fewer than 10 employees.”
Small Business “Incredibly important”
Officials say micro-businesses, small businesses with fewer than than 10 employees, are a key part of Brooklyn Center’s fabric.
“I would say it’s incredibly important,” Beekman said. “The small businesses in our community are an integral part of our economic well being and really are the backbone of this community in terms of the economic stability of our residents.”
Like countless cities across Minnesota and the United States, the pandemic has been challenging for Brooklyn Center. But Beekman believes her city is powering through the tough times.
“I’d say pretty well,” Beekman said. “The city has been able to pivot amazingly quickly. We have almost all of our staff working from home. We are still able to provide the vast majority of services that we were able to provide before. We’re issuing building permits. Development is still ongoing. Things generally are containing to move forward and move on.”
Micro-businesses interested in applying for a loan should go to the Brooklyn Center web page.