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January 31, 2024

Bristol launches forgivable loan fund for small businesses in the city

Contributed The city of Bristol now has a revolving forgivable loan fund for city businesses with fewer than 250 employees.

Bristol announced Wednesday it has created a new fund for small businesses in the city to provide loans that could become forgivable.

The city has partnered with Community Investment Corp. (CIC), a Hamden-based nonprofit economic development financing company, to administer its new Forgivable Revolving Loan Fund.

A news release issued by CIC states that the city will use the fund to focus on encouraging small business growth “to help create/retain jobs, to stimulate commercial property improvements, to encourage businesses located outside Bristol to open in the city, and to help existing Bristol businesses grow. “

The fund, which is restricted to businesses with fewer than 250 employees, offers a competitive interest rate, flexible loan terms, and the opportunity to have up to half of the loan forgiven. According to the release, “If a business makes monthly payments in full and on time to achieve 50% loan payback — and continues to conduct business in Bristol for a minimum of 10 years following the loan closing — the remaining 50% principal loan balance may be forgiven.”

Justin Malley, Bristol’s economic and community development executive director, said the loan fund is another way to stimulate economic development in Bristol.

“The program was designed with guidance from Bristol’s private banks and lenders as a way to complement, rather than replace, traditional financing,” he said.

Louis G. Silva, president and CEO of CIC, said the fund opens with $750,000 available and that, depending on the type of business and the specific use, the maximum loan would be $50,000. “That can be expanded by 25% more if the business is located in Bristol’s enterprise zone,” he added, which would make the maximum $62,500.

Loans are not available for nonprofit organizations or those with federally restricted businesses, such as cannabis vendors, Silva said.

He added that CIC is elated to be selected by Bristol to administer the program.

“We believe the city has designed an impactful program and look forward to adding the program to our current offerings,” he said, “as it will further expand our ability to provide access to capital to small businesses, especially those currently located or looking to relocate to the city of Bristol.”

Information about the program is available on the city’s economic development website,, or on CIC’s website at

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