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In a recent joint press release, the South Coast Santa Barbara Chamber of Commerce and the Santa Maria Chamber of Commerce expressed their recognition of the importance that Hispanic and minority-owned businesses have in the community. As they shared Covid-19 information and resources with community business owners, they identified a gap. While many Hispanic-owned businesses have already taken steps to apply for financial assistance through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), there are still a number of small, local businesses that have yet to do so. . Although there is still time to apply, funding is being distributed quickly and may run out before the May 21 deadline.

In 2012, the U.S. Census Bureau surveyed business owners and self-employed people in Santa Barbara County and determined that 10,340 were considered minority, representing 26% of all respondents.

The PPP loan can help small businesses that have battled the pandemic by keeping their employees on the payroll. Additionally, businesses that borrow may be eligible for PPP loan forgiveness. This funding is only available until May 21. “With the deadline fast approaching, it is absolutely essential that business owners apply so that they can benefit from this opportunity,” the statement from the mixed chambers reads. “Chambers is an advocate for the wider business community and has made resources available, in English and Spanish, to ensure access to financial security amid Covid-19.” To visit SBSCchamber.com Where SantaMaria.com for resources that support the Hispanic business community.