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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $5.3 Million in CARES Act Funding to Capitalize Revolving Loan Fund to Help Small Businesses Across Alaska Respond to Coronavirus

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $5.3 million CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to the State of Alaska Department of Commerce, Juneau, Alaska, to capitalize and administer a Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) that will provide critical gap financing to small businesses and entrepreneurs across Alaska adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

“President Trump is working diligently every day to support our nation’s economy following the impacts of COVID-19 through the CARES Act,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “This investment will provide small businesses in Alaska with the necessary capital to rebound from the coronavirus pandemic and, in turn, create a stronger and more resilient regional economy for the future.”

“This investment comes at a crucial time to help Alaska’s and our nation’s economy come roaring back and provide hard-working Americans with new opportunities,” said Dana Gartzke, Performing the Delegated Duties of the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “Small businesses are the lifeblood of our communities, and EDA is pleased to invest these CARES Act funds in the State of Alaska Department of Commerce to capitalize and administer an RLF that will serve coronavirus impacted businesses across Alaska.”

“I'm grateful to President Trump and Secretary Ross for their ongoing commitment to Alaska's small businesses,” said Governor Mike Dunleavy. “This expansion of the Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development's revolving fund programs will provide an additional and much-needed relief avenue for Alaskan businesses and their hardworking employees as they continue to weather this global pandemic.”

“Alaskans are resilient, but the coronavirus pandemic has created an unprecedented situation that has impacted our economy at all levels,” said Senator Murkowski. “Congress worked hard to provide this funding, which I’m proud to see is going directly to Alaska small businesses and entrepreneurs severely impacted during this pandemic. This kind of assistance is exactly what Congress set out to do when creating and passing the CARES Act. We are providing much-needed relief to help our small businesses survive.”

“This pandemic has been extremely challenging for many of Alaska’s small businesses—the backbone of our state’s economy,” said Senator Dan Sullivan. “Passing the CARES Act and working with the Administration—including with U.S. Department of Commerce—we have been successful in getting much-needed funds to Alaska businesses, workers, and families throughout the state. This grant, to capitalize and administer a Revolving Loan Fund, will help provide even more relief to our small businesses and entrepreneurs who have been adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has affected nearly every area of public life and businesses of all sizes,” said Congressman Don Young. “The CARES Act was crucial for supporting our economy at a time of crisis, and providing needed funding for recovery. I am pleased to see the Economic Development Administration making significant investments in Alaska. This funding will go a long way toward helping entrepreneurs across our state keep their doors open and employees paid while we work to overcome COVID-19. I want to thank President Trump and Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross for their continued partnership on behalf of our state’s businesses and their dedicated workers.”

The State of Alaska Department of Commerce, a current EDA RLF grantee, is one of the more than 850 existing, high-performing EDA Economic Development District, University Center, Tribal, and RLF grant recipients invited to apply for supplemental funding under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

The CARES Act, signed into law by President Donald J. Trump, provides EDA with $1.5 billion for economic development assistance programs to help communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus pandemic.

On May 7, Secretary Ross announced that EDA is accepting applications for CARES Act Recovery Assistance funding opportunities.

EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance, which is being administered under the authority of the bureau’s flexible Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) (PDF) program, provides a wide-range of financial assistance to eligible communities and regions as they respond to and recover from the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. For complete information, please visit our recently updated EDA CARES Act Recovery Assistance page.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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