Local News

Selma helps small businesses with USDA grant

Posted September 16, 2009 10:31 p.m. EDT
Updated September 16, 2009 11:15 p.m. EDT

— The tough economy can be particularly harsh to small businesses, like the Whistle Stop Quilt Shop at 104 E Anderson St. in Selma.

"Very slow compared to year’s past,” said Connie Walker, owner of the Whistle Stop Quilt Shop.

Walker said she was worried that her quilt shop will be forced to close.

"I would have had to close because I could not keep it open the way it was,” Walker said.

Walker said she desperately needed a new roof but couldn’t afford it. Then the town of Selma announced low-interest loans for business owners.

The town loaned Walker $7,200 to fix her leaky roof and help keep her business afloat.

"There was a lot of excitement,” Selma Town Manager Richard Douglas said of the loans.

Douglas said six businesses received loans to help them during the down economy. The money came from a $75,000 USDA Rural Business Enterprise Grant.

"The grant money was used to help stimulate and attract business,” Douglas said.

Reid's Print Services at 109 N Raiford St. got a $10,000 loan from the town to replace a 1960’s printing press.

"It has allowed us to do something quicker,” said Charles Reid, owner of Reid's Print Services.

The new 2003 model press helps "keep my colors crisp, clean,” Reid said.

The loans rates from the town are as low as 2.25 percent, Douglas said. Once the loans are paid back, the money can't be lent again to other businesses in need.