Loan program approved by city council for minority/women businesses

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WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – A revolving loan program has been unanimously approved by the Wichita City Council to help minorities and women in business.

“Women and minority-owned businesses are targeted to apply for up to $15,000 in the loan with a three-year term,” said city councilmember Brandon Johnson. “And that’s either no interest or low interest.”

Johnson said as the loans are paid off over time those new monies will be used to replenish the program.

“It’s something I’ve heard over and over again. Where do I get a small business loan for a few thousand to help with some expenses?” said Johnson.

The council member said he’s been working on a program like this for a long time so it was good to see the council give unanimous approval.

The funds come from the sale of formerly city-owned downtown Hyatt.

“It’s all about access to money,” said Christina Long, owner of CML Collective in Wichita.

Long has been working hard at securing money for small businesses and helping women and minority businesses.

“Your marketing expenses, your client expenses, licensing expenses. You have accounting you know,” said Long. “The costs add up so when you think about how significant a $5,000 injection into a business can be. It can make all the difference.”

Johnson said some of the application processes are still being ironed out, and he expects the program to be available in late April or May.

Money from the sale of the Hyatt has been going to each district where autonomous decisions within the district are made on the money.

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