12-15-2019  5:44 am   •   PDX Weather    •   SEA weather  
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Louisiana State University President Heading to Oregon Job

F. King Alexander will succeed Ed Ray, who is retiring from the position at Oregon State University at the end of June after 17 years as president. Ray will continue in a teaching role at the university

PHOTOS: Black Santa Visits Northwest African American Museum

The Skanner's Seattle photographer Susan Fried was on hand to snap some photos

English Language Learners' Success Translates Into a $25,000 Milken Educator Award for Teacher Julie Rowell

Oregon educator boosts student achievement and future prospects at Gresham High School

Portland Resident Hoping to Donate Kidney to Black Recipient

Fewer Black patients receive live kidney donations

NEWS BRIEFS

Friends of the Children Chapter Coming to Tacoma, Executive Director Announced

Organization empowers youth facing the greatest obstacles through the long-term support of professional mentors ...

Oregon Humane Society Celebrates the Adoption of the 11,000th Pet of 2019

Max, a two-year-old Labrador/Weimaraner mix, is going to a new home with the Dunlap family of Damascus ...

EPA Approves Funding for Oregon and Washington to Improve Drinking Water, Wastewater Infrastructure

States estimate $190 million for wastewater, $35 million for drinking water projects in Oregon, and $120 million for...

Conservation Breakthrough for Endangered Butterfly

The Oregon Zoo's breeding success provides new hope in an effort to save Oregon silverspots ...

Meet 80 Local Authors at OHS 52nd Holiday Cheer Book Sale and Signing

This free Oregon Historical Society event will be held this Sunday, December 8 from 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. ...

Man convicted of hate crime for punching transgender woman

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon man convicted of punching a transgender woman has been sentenced to probation. Dominick Gonzales, 38, changed his plea Friday and was convicted of first-degree bias crime for punching the woman in Northwest Portland in September, Multnomah County District...

Oregon Supreme Court upholds district attorney suspension

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The Oregon Supreme Court upheld a decision to suspend a district attorney for lying to investigators. Wasco County District Attorney Eric Nisley will be suspended from practicing law for two months beginning in February, the court ruled Thursday. The ruling upholds...

New Missouri coach Eli Drinkwitz predicts success

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Eli Drinkwitz was saying all the right things after being introduced as the new football coach at Missouri, laying out his vision for the once-proud program with unwavering confidence and bold proclamations.Then the former Appalachian State coach made a minor...

LSU's Burrow, Auburn's Brown named AP SEC players of year

LSU quarterback Joe Burrow is a unanimous selection as the offensive player of the year on The Associated Press All-Southeastern Conference football team.The top-ranked Tigers also have the SEC’s coach of the year in Ed Orgeron and the newcomer of the year in freshman cornerback Derek...

OPINION

Will You Answer the Call for Moral Revival?

In embracing and expanding the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Revs. Barber and Theoharis have asked Presidential candidates to consider a debate that focuses exclusively on poverty ...

What I’m Thankful For This Season

Ray Curry gives thanks for a human right that shaped our country throughout the 20th century and that made Thanksgiving possible for so many Americans who, like him, didn’t get here by way of the Mayflower ...

Congressional Black Caucus Members Visit U.S.-Mexico Border: “Mistreatment of Black Immigrants is Another ‘Stain on America’”

Members said they witnessed first-hand the deplorable treatment and plight of Black immigrants ...

Portland, I'm Ready

Last month I had the privilege to stand with hundreds of supporters and announce my intention to run for re-election ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Former Gary, Indiana, Mayor Richard Hatcher dead at 86

Former Gary Mayor Richard Hatcher, who became one of the first black mayors of a big U.S. city when he was elected in 1967, has died. He was 86.Hatcher died Friday night at a Chicago hospital, said his daughter, Indiana state Rep. Ragen Hatcher, a Gary Democrat. She did not provide a cause of her...

Reparations mark new front for US colleges tied to slavery

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — The promise of reparations to atone for historical ties to slavery has opened new territory in a reckoning at U.S. colleges, which until now have responded with monuments, building name changes and public apologies. Georgetown University and two theological seminaries...

AP Exclusive: China tightens up on info after Xinjiang leaks

The Xinjiang regional government in China’s far west is deleting data, destroying documents, tightening controls on information and has held high-level meetings in response to leaks of classified papers on its mass detention camps for Uighurs and other predominantly Muslim minorities,...

ENTERTAINMENT

'Lemonade' by Beyoncé is named the AP's album of the decade

NEW YORK (AP) — The top 15 albums of the decade by Associated Press Music Editor Mesfin Fekadu:1. Beyoncé, “Lemonade”: At the beginning of this decade, Beyoncé was already the greatest singer of her generation. She won a record six Grammys in a single night, had women...

'Mad Men' actress Christina Hendricks files for divorce

LOS ANGELES (AP) — “Mad Men” actress Christina Hendricks filed for divorce Friday from her husband of 10 years, actor Geoffrey Arend. Hendricks filed the marriage dissolution documents in Los Angeles Superior Court, citing irreconcilable differences. The 44-year-old Hendricks...

‘Rise of Skywalker’ is almost here, but a dark side looms

LOS ANGELES (AP) — When Disney bought Lucasfilm for more than billion in 2012, there were lofty expectations of reviving “Star Wars” in spectacular hyper-speed fashion with a new trilogy that continued the story of Luke Skywalker and other beloved characters.The space saga...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Oscar winner Colin Firth and wife split after 22 years

LONDON (AP) — Oscar-winning British actor Colin Firth has split from his Italian film producer wife Livia...

Under pressure, Hallmark pulls gay-themed wedding ads

NEW YORK (AP) — Under pressure from a conservative advocacy group, The Hallmark Channel has pulled ads for...

75 years on, Battle of the Bulge memories bond people

THIMISTER-CLERMONT, Belgium (AP) — As a schoolboy three quarters of a century ago, Marcel Schmetz would...

75 years on, Battle of the Bulge memories bond people

THIMISTER-CLERMONT, Belgium (AP) — As a schoolboy three quarters of a century ago, Marcel Schmetz would...

Toxic air, gases hamper search for last 2 volcano victims

WHAKATANE, New Zealand (AP) — A second land search of New Zealand's volcanic White Island on Sunday failed...

Police targets of both love and anger at Hong Kong rallies

Several thousand people, some making heart signs with their hands, turned out in Hong Kong on Sunday in an unusual...

McMenamins
Nancy Mccarthy of The Skanner

It's not unusual for small-business owners to find themselves in a financial pinch once in awhile. There's an unexpected emergency or a temporary downturn in sales. Or there's a need to expand, and the bank won't approve a loan for the entire amount needed.

To bridge that funding gap, small-businessoperators will be able to turn to the Portland Development Commission for loans through a new program soon to be offered to businesses in Portland's low-income neighborhoods.

The "New Markets Tax Credits" fund eventually will contain $750,000 to lend to businesses. Between 30 and 50 loans could be made, depending on their size, said Fred Atiemo, the commission's business finance manager. More loans may be made through the revolving loan fund as loans are repaid.

The commission has made loans to small businesses in the past, Atiemo said, but the definition of "small" was 50 or fewer employees. With the New Markets loans, "small" can mean a one-person operation.

"Small" also figures in the size of the loans offered, which could go as low as $1,000 and as high as $50,000. Most loans are expected to be in the $10,000 to $20,000 range, Atiemo said.

This is the first public program in the nation that is offering loans of this size to small businesses, he added. Other agencies usually start withaminimumof $150,000.

The loans are targeted toward small "micro" businesses located in low-income neighborhoods designated by a federal government census. Those communities include, among others, North and Northeast Portland, Lents and Old Town. A map of eligible neighborhoods and the loan requirements should be on the Portland Development Commission Web site at www.pdc.us.

Most businesses will be eligible, especially if they will generate jobs and enhance the local community, Atiemo said. However, businesses that don't allow minors — taverns, for instance — may not be eligible, he added.

New businesses can apply, as long as they have a business plan that acts as a "roadmap that shows how they will get from point A to point B," he said. But the loans could be especially helpful for businesses that are a few years old and have temporary cash-flow problems, Artiemo added.

While banks calculate the risk factor of making a loan against the need to make a profit, the Portland Development Commission is a public agency that can take greater risks, Atiemo said.

"The objective is different than a bank," Atiemo said. "We are supporting businesses to succeed."

Banks usually consider whether the business owner can and will repay the loan and what can be used for collateral, he noted.

But when the loan is made through the "New Markets" fund, "We will look at what money management experience the business owner has, what public good the business will do and what jobs will be created," Atiemo said. "We will be flexible."

Interest rates will range from 3 percent to 8 percent and payback times will go from about seven to 10 years. Borrowers may have some options in the way they repay the loans, Atiemo added. For instance, they may be allowed to pay interest-only for a while before adding on the principle.

Business owners hoping to apply for the loans will have to be sponsored by local organizations, such as Oregon Association of Minority Entrepreneurs, the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Black United Fund or Portland State University's business outreach program. Applications first will be made through the sponsoring organization, and that organization will submit an application to the commission for approval. Once the commission receives the application, it should take about two to three weeks for approval, Atiemo said.

The tax credits will come through a partnership with Portland Family of Funds, which has worked with the Portland Development Commission on past tax-increment funding projects. The commission earns federal tax "credits" when it invests in low-income neighborhoods, and the credits become funds for low-interest loans, said Bob Alexander, the commission's economic development director.

Such tax credits have been used in the past for low-income housing projects.

"Clearly this is a way to creatively address the problem that businesses have to obtain working capital, which is what we often hear about," Alexander said.

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