A $750,000 U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development loan will allow the Cumberland Area Investment Corporation to make loans to small businesses in DeKalb County, U.S. Representative Bart Gordon said.
"In Tennessee, small businesses drive the state's economy," Gordon said. "Small businesses, those with fewer than 500 employees, employ over 44% of Tennesseans. Women represent over 35% and minorities account for over 18% of small business owners in Tennessee."
The funds will be used to create a revolving loan fund that will make small business loans in the 14 Upper Cumberland counties CAIC serves. CAIC will inject $750,000 of matching funds into the revolving loan fund to leverage the fund. Their intermediary Relending Program already has small business applications totaling almost $1.4 million on hand.
"Small businesses are the backbone of rural economies, and we are very pleased to be able to further our efforts in supporting small businesses, as well as start-up business throughout the region," Wendy Askins, executive director of the Upper Cumberland Development District, said.
A projected 300 jobs will be created as a result of the Intermediary Relending Program.
"Thanks to the support of our leaders like Congressman Bart Gordon, USDA Rural Development has the financial resources to invest in good jobs through the work of the Cumberland Area Investment Corp, said Rural Development State Director Mary Ruth Tackett.
CAIC serves Cannon, Clay, Cumberland, DeKalb, Fentress, Jackson, Macon, Overton, Pickett, Putnam, Smith, Van Buren, Warren, and White counties.