Greensburg lender helps borrowers hit by closing; delay the april payment
A Greensburg-based commercial lender has decided to forgo collecting payments from its borrowers in April to give them a break during the economic downturn caused by the shutdown due to the spread of the coronavirus.
The Progress Fund, a non-profit community development financial institution, is giving all of its 65 current borrowers a one-month ‘time off’ after making a payment because their cash flow has been reduced, the president said and CEO, David A. Kahley.
“We gave them all to be quick and fair,” Kahley said.
About 80% of Progress Fund borrowers have been affected by the shutdown, which will allow them to “raise their money for other immediate expenses,” Kahley said. The remaining 20% either have sufficient cash flow or are not businesses affected by the shutdown, Kahley said.
Many Progress Fund borrowers, such as bed and breakfasts, entertainment venues, restaurants, outdoor recreation, bicycle shops, and retail stores depend on the tourism industry for their activities, Kahley said.
“This (shutdown) occurred during a period of downturn in business for the tourism industry,” Kahley said of Governor Wolf’s March 19 order shutting down non-vital businesses.
“It hurts everyone in southwestern Pennsylvania,” he added.
The Progress Fund will continue to assess the situation and consider other possible actions, such as extending the deferral of monthly payments to May, Kahley said. Creating an emergency fund to help more businesses with cash flow issues is also under consideration, Kahley said.
“You have to keep your client from bleeding because the ambulance will take a while to get there,” Kahley said, referring to the Small Business Administration’s $ 349 billion loan program in the US Senate version of the project. coronavirus relief law. The House of Representatives plans to vote on the bill this week.
However, getting the money approved by the bill will require going through layers of bureaucracy, Kahley said.
“It will be a process,” he noted.