For the Y2K-impaired Featured

9:55am EDT July 22, 2002

Certainly, the business community and the government have been beating the Y2K drum loudly and constantly over the past year hoping to stir businesses into action over the potential problem. But for those many stragglers out there, the government still wants to help. And it’s backing that desire with loan funds.

The SBA’s new Y2K Action Loans are available through Dec. 31, 2000, to enable small businesses to become Y2K compliant. In addition, after Jan. 1, 2000, SBA will be able to guarantee loans to small businesses that suffer economic injury as a result of Y2K-related problems.

“Y2K is an issue that every small business must address,” says SBA Administrator Aida Alvarez. “However, potential repair costs should not be a reason to avoid preparing for the Y2K challenge. SBA’s new Y2K Action Loan Program allows small firms to obtain the financing they need to become ‘Y2K OK’.”

According to Alvarez, this special purpose lending program was authorized by the Small Business Year 2000 Readiness Act, and signed into law April 2, 1999, by President Clinton. The Y2K Action Loan Program is part of SBA’s highly successful guaranteed business loan program, known as the 7(a) program.

Under this new loan program, the SBA can guarantee as much as $750,000 of a loan made for Y2K purposes, and if a borrower already has an SBA loan, the total amount of SBA’s combined guaranties may go as high as $1 million Y2K Action Loans have a variety of other special features as well that make them especially attractive to both lenders and borrowers.

For more information about the Y2K Action Loan Program, or other ways the SBA can help small businesses meet the challenge of Y2K, contact the Pittsburgh office of the SBA at (412) 395-6565 or visit SBA’s comprehensive Web site at www.sba.gov.