By Travis Fain, WRAL statehouse reporter

 — Small businesses in North Carolina can apply for loans up to $50,000, with no interest and no payments due for six months, to help them stay afloat as the COVID-19 pandemic shuts down large swaths of the economy.

Golden LEAF, a Rocky Mount-based economic development foundation, announced the rapid recovery loan program Tuesday and said it earmarked $15 million for the project. The program is meant to provide bridge funding for businesses that apply for economic injury loans through the U.S. Small Business Administration but also have more immediate needs.

After six months, these loans automatically convert to term loans.

To apply or learn more, visit or call 800.228.8443.

Tuesday’s announcement was accompanied by supportive comments from Gov. Roy Cooper, House Speaker Tim Moore and Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger.

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Article written by Travis Fain, WRAL statehouse reporter