Governor Announces Funds to Help Spur Job Growth

September 15, 2011

For Immediate Release: Friday, September 16, 2011
Contact: Adrienne Bennett (207) 287-2531

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY, MAINE GOVERNOR PAUL LEPAGE ANNOUNCE FUNDS TO SPUR $132 MILLION IN NEW LENDING TO MAINE SMALL BUSINESSES, HELP CREATE JOBS

Washington, D.C. – Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury and Maine Governor Paul LePage announced the approval of Maine’s State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) application. Maine’s planned use of the SSBCI funds will help create new private sector jobs and spur more than $132 million in additional small-businesses lending in the state. The SSBCI program, which supports state-level, small-business lending programs, is an important component of the Small Business Jobs Act signed into law last fall.

Under the Small Business Jobs Act, Maine can access $13.2 million in SSBCI funds. Maine expects to leverage at least $10 in new private lending for every $1 in federal funding. As such, this $13.2 million allocation for Maine is expected to support more than $132 million in new private lending in the state.

“Many small businesses are still struggling to access the capital they need to invest, expand and create new jobs,” said Treasurer of the United States Rosie Rios. “These critical funds will provide a powerful incentive for lending to small businesses, spurring additional job creation and further strengthening our nation’s economic recovery.”

“Maine job creators need access to credit and capital in order to create jobs and hire new employees,” said Governor LePage. “Maine’s economic recovery is driven by small businesses and their vision for growth. In partnership with the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development and the Finance Authority of Maine, small business owners will now have more resources for that growth."

The Maine Department of Economic and Community Development, in cooperation with the Finance Authority of Maine (FAME), will use these funds to support the Economic Recovery Loan Program; the Regional Economic Development Revolving Loan Program; and the Small Enterprise Growth Fund (SEGF). Maine’s Economic Recovery Loan Program provides direct loans of up to $1 million for businesses with insufficient access to credit in order to remain viable and improve productivity. The Regional Economic Development Revolving Loan Program provides loans to Maine’s regional economic development agencies for the purpose of creating or retaining jobs. The Small Enterprise Growth Fund is a state-run venture capital fund that invests in Maine companies that demonstrate a potential for high growth and public benefit.

Under the State Small Business Credit Initiative, all states are offered the opportunity to apply for federal funds for state-run programs that partner with private lenders to increase the amount of credit available to small businesses. States must demonstrate a reasonable expectation that a minimum of $10 in new private lending will result from every $1 in federal funding. Accordingly, the overall $1.5 billion federal funding commitment for this program is expected to result in at least $15 billion in additional private lending nationwide.

For more information on FAME and the Economic Recovery Loan Program and the Regional Economic Development Revolving Loan Program, please visit www.famemaine.com. For information on the Small Enterprise Growth Fund, please visit www.segfmaine.com.

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