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USDA Business and Industry CARES Act Program

Link to Application: HERE


What does this program do?

This program offers loan guarantees to lenders for their loans to rural businesses and agricultural producers to supplement their working capital to prevent, prepare for and respond to the economic impacts of the Coronavirus.


What lenders may apply for this program?

Lenders need the legal authority, financial strength and sufficient experience to operate a successful lending program. This includes:

  1. Federal or state-chartered banks.

  2. Savings and loans.

  3. Farm credit banks.

  4. Credit unions.


Who may qualify for these guaranteed loans?

  1. For-profit businesses.

  2. Nonprofits.Cooperatives.

  3. Federally-recognized Tribes.

  4. Public bodies.


What are the borrowing restrictions?

Loans may be used only to support rural businesses, including agricultural producers, that were in operation on Feb. 15, 2020.

Individual borrowers must be citizens of the United States or reside in the U.S. after being legally admitted for permanent residence.

Private-entity borrowers must demonstrate that loan funds will remain in the U.S.


How may guaranteed loan funds be used?

Eligible uses are: Loans must be used as working capital to prevent, prepare for or respond to the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.


What is the percentage of a loan guarantee?

90 percent for all loans.


What are the loan terms?

Maximum loan term is 10 years.

Loans must be repaid in full and amortized by the maturity date; balloon payments are not permitted.

Interest payments may be deferred in the first year; principal payments may be deferred for up to 3 years.


What are the interest rates?

Interest rates are negotiated between the lender and borrower, subject to Agency review.

Rates may be fixed or variable.

Variable interest rates may not be adjusted more often than quarterly.


How do we get started?

Applications are accepted from lenders through USDA local offices year-round.

Interested borrowers should inquire about the program with their lender.

Lenders interested in participating in this program should contact the USDA Rural Development Business Programs Director in the state where the project is located.



Who can answer my questions from USDA?

Christa Minges

530-792-5818

christa.minges@usda.gov - Email is the preferred method of communication



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