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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $1.5 Million in CARES Act Recovery Assistance to Establish Revolving Loan Fund to Assist Small Businesses in West Virginia

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $1.5 million CARES Act Recovery Assistance grant to Natural Capital Investment Fund, Inc., Charles Town, West Virginia, to capitalize and administer a Revolving Loan Fund that will provide critical gap financing to small businesses throughout West Virginia. This EDA grant is expected to create 200 jobs, retain 500 jobs, and generate $5 million in private investment.

“President Biden is working to deliver bold action and immediate relief for American businesses as the nation continues to respond to the coronavirus pandemic,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “This EDA investment in the Natural Capital Investment Fund will support a Revolving Loan Fund that will assist small businesses with their capital needs and help West Virginia communities build back stronger.”

“The Economic Development Administration is committed to helping communities across the nation implement strategies to mitigate economic hardships brought on by the coronavirus pandemic,” said Dennis Alvord, Acting Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “This EDA investment will increase the resiliency of the West Virginia economy, preparing small businesses for future economic growth.”

“I’m incredibly grateful for the EDA’s continued investment in West Virginia. I’ve been a business guy my whole life, so I understand what putting $1.5 million dollars into our small businesses can do for the people across our great state,” said Governor Jim Justice. “When you’re talking about creating 200 new jobs and retaining 500 more jobs, the ripple effects are going to be tremendous. This will improve thousands of West Virginians’ lives, strengthen entire communities, and will help us continue to grow upon the momentum we’ve been building in West Virginia’s economy over the past several years.”

“The EDA continues to be a strong partner to West Virginia by supporting our people, our economy and our businesses,” said Senator Joe Manchin. “Today’s announcement is great news for the Mountain State and will support West Virginia small businesses that have been hit hard over the past year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The EDA’s investment in Natural Capital Investment Fund in Charles Town will administer a Revolving Loan Fund that will support small businesses across the state and create and retain good-paying jobs for West Virginians. I look forward to seeing the economic growth from this investment and I will continue to work with the EDA to advocate for funding to support small businesses, boost our economy and create jobs in West Virginia.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has put incredible strain on our small businesses in West Virginia,” said Senator Shelley Moore Capito. “Even as restrictions and limits on gatherings begin to lift, these effects are still felt in communities across our state. Natural Capital Investment Fund has been consistent in helping with recovery efforts, and this EDA investment will allow them to provide the support needed that retains and creates hundreds of jobs through their Revolving Loan Fund. Investments like this are crucial to the longevity of towns and cities in West Virginia and across the nation.”

“Our West Virginia small businesses are recovering and rebuilding from coronavirus shutdown. Natural Capital Investment Fund has a proven track record of helping local businesses thrive, and I’m glad this relief is being awarded to businesses in the region,” said Congressman Alex Mooney (WV-02). “The investment will lead to job creation and economic opportunities.”

This project is funded under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (Public Law 116-136 PDF), which provided EDA with $1.5 billion for economic assistance programs to help communities prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus. 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.

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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