The Detroit Lakes Development Authority has 13, $4,000 loans for COVID-19 impacted businesses, but, so far, no companies have applied for the relief loans.

Since no businesses have applied for these loans when they were first approved in March, the development authority agreed Tuesday to send out promotional letters about the loans to businesses who have applied for the city's COVID-19 relief grants in the past. Development authority members hope this will stimulate interest in the program.

"The trouble is that $4,000 is not much, but it could help someone," said Ron Zeman, alderman for ward one. "I've had a number of phone calls here in the last two weeks, and restaurants especially, they are on their knees right now, and this is going to be a long stretch for them without having funds they need for the sales not coming in."

Members of the development authority agreed the application for the loans was simple enough and did not require any changes.

The $4,000 loans carry a 2% interest rate and are payable over 21 months with the first payment due three months after receiving the loan.

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"They would have 18 months of payments of $230 to pay off that loan," said Larry Remmen, community development director for Detroit Lakes, during the virtual meeting.

Any Detroit Lakes business that wants to apply should fill out the loan application and contact Larry Remmen.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the city of Detroit Lakes has spent more than $713,000 in CARES Act emergency relief grants and the Becker County Board of Commissioners have approved $1 million in small business relief grants.

In Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, a bipartisan group of senators unveiled the framework of a new $908 billion COVID-19 relief bill, which includes $160 billion in state and local government aid, according to NBC News. A summary obtained by the news organization also outlined $288 billion in new small business assistance and $180 billion in new unemployment insurance.