The County of El Paso has partnered with PeopleFund to help distribute zero interest loans up to $50,000 to eligible businesses in the County. Qualifying businesses can also have their loans be forgiven.

Eligible Businesses must meet these requirements:

  • Located in El Paso County
  • Sole proprietorship, partnerships, corporations or any other legal form
  • Have an Employer Identification Number (EIN)
  • In existence on/before January 1, 2020
  • Demonstrate negative impact due to COVID (reduced revenue/increased costs)
  • Have less than 30 employees
  • Not currently in bankruptcy
  • Have developed and implemented Health & Safety Policy pursuant to County Judge’s Orders
  • Franchises (Locally Owned & Independently Operated, Only One Storefront per Franchisee)

Excluded Businesses:

  • Age-restricted businesses
  • Bank, savings and loan or credit union
  • E-commerce only company
  • Political or lobbying organizations
  • Real estate investment trusts (primary income from rental/income producing properties)
  • Businesses who have received more than $50,000 of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) assistance shall only receive funding for any unmet need in excess of their PPP allotment.

Other Exclusions:

  • Employees of El Paso County
  • Persons/entities who are a party to a lawsuit against the County within the past 24 months
  • Persons/entities who have been a party to a contract with El Paso County that has been terminated in the past 24 months because of insufficient performance.
  • Persons/entities that have received a citation for failure to comply with health directives or orders issued by the El Paso County Judge, City of El Paso Mayor or Texas Governor.

Qualifying Criteria for Loan Forgiveness

Businesses that meet 2 of the requirements below can potentially receive 25% of their loan forgiven.

Businesses that meet 3 of the requirements below can potentially receive 50% of their loan forgiven.

Businesses that meet 4 or more of the requirements below can potentially receive 100% of their loan forgiven.

  • Historically underutilized businesses (minority/women/veteran owned businesses)
  • Non-essential business voluntarily reduced capacity below guidelines and directives issued by health authority, Texas Governor or County Judge by 25 percent
  • Businesses who provide employees with a living wage of $12/hour
  • Businesses seeking to install new equipment that promotes public health and safety for employees and patrons, including any of the following:

o Drive Thru/Walkup Service Window

o Plexiglass or other clear shields at strategic locations

o HELP Air Filtration, Bi-Polar Ionization, UV Light Purification

o Other specialized equipment that limits the spread of contagion via anti-microbial or anti-septic technology/design (e.g. antimicrobial mats, touchless door entry, automatic flush toilets, motion sensor faucets, motion sensor light fixtures )

  • Business utilizes delivery, curbside-service, al fresco dining or other services that allow business to have zero interaction with customers in doors for period of 90 days
  • Business constructs open or semi-open facilities to move operations involving interaction with customers away from indoor facilities
  • Business invests in technological solutions that:

o Allows of employees to work from home for 120 days

o Increases digital sales

  • Businesses replace current POS system with one that allows for touchless payments
  • Receive at least one hour of Technical Assistance prior to pre-funding. This hour will be used to determine whether additional technical assistance is needed and if so, for a plan to be developed accordingly.
  • Other proposals shall be considered and approved by administering agency and County staff if they promote public health and safety (for employees and/or consumers) or promote business sustainability and resiliency.

Please note:  Forgiveness eligibility to be determined within 90 days following disbursement of the loan.

Funding Tier Prioritization:

Tier I: Businesses located outside of the City of El Paso and within El Paso County.

Tier II: Businesses located within the City of El Paso.

Any remaining Tier I funds will be made available to any business located within El Paso County, including businesses located within El Paso city limits after March 5, 2021.

If you have questions about this program, please call 915-213-1537 or contact us here.

Please click here if you are ready to apply.

Please click here to learn more about financial assistance in El Paso.