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County to consider low-interest loans to assist small businesses

Help for Mecklenburg small businesses will top the agenda today when the Board of County Commissioners holds its first-ever virtual meeting at 6 p.m.
Like most things in Char-Meck, the board has been effectively sidelined since the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) arrived here last month.
In addition to hearing a COVID-19 update, the board will consider a plan to offer $5 million in low-Interest loans to qualifying businesses.
Why it Matters: Mecklenburg County is home to nearly 28,000 small businesses – “small” defined as those with fewer than 50 employees. Because of forced closings and loss of revenue, many of those businesses face financial ruin.
As a result, the Mecklenburg Office of Economic Development has seen a “dramatic increase” in the number of calls from small-business owners seeking assistance, according to a county document that lays out the proposal.
Fast cash: Loans to individual businesses would be capped at $35,000, with a goal to distribute funds no more than 10 calendar days after completed applications. The minimum loan amount would be $10,000.
The loans may be used for lease payments, real estate loans, operating capital, payroll, immediate bills or utilities.
Slow repay: Borrowers would have up to 10 years to repay the county loans, which would carry a 3% interest rate. The initial 12 months would require interest-only payments, followed by nine years of principal and interest payments.

Here’s are some examples:
The bottom line: If you want to [virtually] attend today's meeting, go to the Government Channel, Twitter or online at Or, you may listen in by calling 408-418-9388 and using access code 715 784 086.
That was the number of people who had tested positive for COVID-19 as of 4:30 p.m. yesterday -- an increase of 92 cases in 24 hours. The county also reported a total of seven COVID-related deaths.
  • About 3 in 4 reported cases were adults ages 20 to 59 years old. Eleven cases were youth under 20 years old.
  • Younger adults make up most cases for all racial/ethnic groups except non-Hispanic Blacks, for whom one-third of cases were older adults (≥ 60 years) and only a quarter were in the youngest age group (20 to 39 years).
Source: Mecklenburg County
Yard waste is not trash or recycling!

Consider that a message from Solid Waste Management, courtesy of QCity Metro.
Because of COVID-19, the city of Charlotte and town of Matthews have suspended the curbside collection of yard waste. As a result, the county’s solid waste workers have been “overwhelmed with residents inappropriately placing non-recyclable materials into their recycling containers,” according to the county.
Some of the items have included: yard waste, clothing, microwaves, and vacuum cleaners.
“Improper recycling is causing lots of problems in sorting,” the county said in a statement. “Sorting is done mostly by people. Actions by the public can directly affect the health and safety of those sorters and other Solid Waste workers.”
In Mecklenburg, six items may be recycled in your home recycling container or at the County’s recycling centers:
  • Aluminum cans
  • Bi-metal cans
  • Paper
  • Glass bottles
  • Cardboard
  • Plastic bottles with necks

A special thanks to our newest Press Club members.
  • Krista and Gerald Terrell Jr.
  • Esther Fleming

Now more than ever, Press Club members play a vital role in supporting our work. In fact, some are calling COVID-19 a "media extinction event," and the nation's Black Press is especially susceptible.

The money we collect from memberships -- $50 for one year or $80 for two years -- all goes to compensate the growing team of reporters and writers who devote their time and energy to keep you informed. Here’s a link to our membership page.
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