With Revolving Loan Fund, Mayor Schember & City Council Join Together to Reinvest in City’s Business Community

In another sign of unity and commitment to reinvesting in the City’s future, Mayor Schember and City Council came together to reinvest in its Revolving Loan Fund. At the Aug. 16, 2023, City Council regular meeting, in a unanimous vote, Council transferred $5.36 million from various unspent American Rescue Plan programs into its revolving loan fund.

Erie City Council President Chuck Nelson sees a bright future for the City through this arrangement.

“With this investment, we are confident that we can continue the transformational change that is occurring throughout the city,” said Nelson on Friday. “We are particularly excited that we were able to approve a loan to VelocityNet for $1,360,660 that same evening for fiber optic internet service to low- and moderate-income households in bayfront neighborhoods. This is exactly the type of forward-thinking investment and use of the loan funds council likes to see.”

Mayor Joe Schember agrees.

“Capitalizing the Revolving Loan Fund is one of the best ways we can invest in our community,” said Mayor Schember on Friday. “It allows us to see investment in the city. And as these loans are paid back, reinvested again and again.”

According to Chris Groner, Vice President of Capital Finance & Lending for the Erie County Redevelopment Authority (ECRDA), “Mayor Schember and City Council have been very supportive of the loan program, investing $18.5 million since 2018. This continuous capitalization has allowed us to maximize our impact on the community’s revitalization.”

The City of Erie’s Revolving Loan fund was established in 1990 through a Pennsylvania Enterprise Loan Program grant. Since its inception, the fund has awarded approximately 250 loans for $50 million. The City Revolving Loan Fund is capitalized at $25 million and is managed by ECRDA as part of its one-stop shop for public financing. The ECRDA loan portfolio currently sits in excess of $55 million.

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