San Diego County Board of Supervisors

Media inquiries: Miles Himmel, 858-444-6932,

                           Steve Schmidt, 619-206-9108,

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­NEWS RELEASE



The Board of Supervisors today (4/21) voted to launch a $5 million loan program to ease small business losses related to coronavirus.

The initiative, proposed by Vice-Chairman Jim Desmond and Supervisor Dianne Jacob, will allow businesses with 50 employees or fewer to apply for loans of up to $50,000 each.

Only businesses in the county’s unincorporated area will be considered. The San Diego Foundation will oversee the program.

“We are all well aware that small businesses are really struggling right now due to COVID-19,” said Vice-Chairman Desmond. “We want to make sure we offer the resources so that businesses can get up and running shortly. I’ve heard from hundreds of business owners who are eager to get back to work and willing to follow the safety protocols. Hopefully with this loan program and their understanding we can get the economy up and running sooner!”

San Diego, Poway and other municipalities have launched similar efforts after the state deemed many businesses non-essential and ordered them closed due to the pandemic.

“Small businesses are the backbone of our economy and they’re in a world of pain right now,” said Supervisor Jacob. “While cities and other levels of government are also taking action, the county needs to do all it can to ease the losses caused by the COVID-19 crisis in our unincorporated area, and to help set employers and employees on a path to recovery.”

Businesses borrowing from this fund will not be charged more than 2 percent interest and payment terms will be capped to be consistent with the state and Community Development Financial Institutions standards.

The San Diego Foundation – through the San Diego County COVID-19 Small Business and Nonprofit Loan Program – and its partners will ensure the loans are backed by the state’s Small Business Loan Guarantee Program or a comparable program.

“With the Loan Program, San Diego County has made an early and vital commitment to the recovery of our small business and nonprofit sectors,” expressed Mark Stuart, President and CEO of The San Diego Foundation. “It’s going to take all agencies, organizations and sectors working together to develop regional assets like the Loan Program to rebuild our economy and get San Diegans back to work.”

Coronavirus has, and will continue to, cause significant negative impacts to local business within the unincorporated area. Businesses are reeling due to a collapse in revenue and many workers are furloughed or unemployed.

Many businesses cannot bear the loss of revenue long-term without the help of local assistance.