An equipment loan not tied to jobs

Low interest rates apparently have trickled down to where they now may be of potential benefit to small and medium manufacturers.

Manufacturers looking to purchase technology-based capital equipment may qualify for a loan at a fixed interest rate of 5 percent through the Southwestern Pennsylvania Industrial Resource Center.

Technology-based equipment, for the purposes of these loans, is defined as computer hardware, software, computer-aided design and computer-aided manufacturing equipment, computer-numerically controlled process equipment and other technology upgrades.

The rate is available for loans up to a maximum of $100,000 or 50 percent of the total cost of the equipment. To qualify, borrowers must have operations within the counties of Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Bedford, Butler, Cambria, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Lawrence, Somerset, Washington or Westmoreland.

Job creation is not a requirement, and the loan can work in conjunction with other private or public financing programs, such as the Pennsylvania Small Business First program. For more information, call Art Tintori, director of financial services at SPIRC, at (412) 687-0200.