State establishes $425,000 loan fund for businesses hurt by East Harlem Explosion

State establishes $425,000 loan fund for businesses hurt by East Harlem Explosion

State officials have created a new loan fund to aid small businesses impacted by the March 12th gas explosion in East Harlem.

The East Harlem Small Business Emergency Loan Program will distribute $425,000 in individual loans of up to $20,000 to small businesses and non-profits that suffered damage as a result of the blast, Gov. Cuomo announced Wednesday.

“New Yorkers come together in times of hardship, and today we are doing just that,” Cuomo said. “These loans will help small business owners impacted by March’s tragic explosion get back on their feet, and I am proud that the state is joining with our local partners to support their recovery and make this program a reality.”

The program is being funded through a $100,000 state grant, $125,000 from the Harlem Community Development Corporation, a $100,000 grant from the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone, and $100,000 in private donations raised by Assemblyman Robert Rodriguez.

To be eligible, applicants must be located between East 115th Street and East 118th Street; and between Lexington Avenue and Madison Avenue. They must also have been in operation on March 11, 2014 – the before the explosion – and have been registered with the state as a legally established business or not-for-profit.
Johnnie Stevens