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November 9, 2007

DiNapoli, NYBDC Announce $5 Million Loan Program for
Returning War Veterans

Veteran’s Loan Program to Help Returning Veterans Re-establish Their Businesses Audio Available audio available

New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli and New York Business Development Corporation CEO Pat MacKrell today announced the availability of $5 million in below market fixed-rate small business loans for returning military veterans.

“For many New York small business owners serving in the Guard or Reserve, being called to active duty means shutting down their businesses,” DiNapoli said. “Small businesses are the backbone of New York’s economy. These loans for returning veterans will help ease the financial burden deployment has on so many of our citizen soldiers and on our economy. It’s the least we can do for those who have already sacrificed so much.”

Under the Veteran’s Loan Program, New York business owners who serve in the Guard or Reserve, or honorably-discharged former active duty members may apply, through the NYBDC, for small business loans up to $150,000. Loans may be used for existing businesses or start-ups. The interest rate on the loan is set at U.S. Treasury plus 1.50 percent. Using interest rates in effect for the week of November 5, 2007, the rate for a 10-year term would be fixed at 5.69 percent.

“Access to capital drives the growth of small business which in turn creates economic opportunity across New York,” said NYBDC CEO Pat MacKrell, “Our veterans have served our country under difficult and often life-threatening circumstances. We are proud to recognize their contributions and express the gratitude of our member banks by offering this loan program. This would not be possible without the strong support of the Common Retirement Fund and the insightful leadership of Comptroller DiNapoli.”

The New York State Common Retirement Fund provides funds to the NYBDC to make loans to New York-domiciled small businesses for working capital, equipment or real property. Since 1987, NYBDC has used these funds to make more than 700 loans totaling more than $200 million to businesses employing more than 16,000 New Yorkers. As part of the CRF’s $100 million commitment to NYBDC in 2007, the Comptroller designated $5 million to be used exclusively for small business loans to returning military veterans. The NYBDC agreed to both cap the interest rate that can be given to veterans and to waive its servicing fee in support of the Veterans’ Loan Program initiative.

Returning military veterans interested in applying for a small business loan under the Veteran’s Loan Program call the NYBDC at 1-800-923-2504.

About the New York State Common Retirement Fund
The $154.5 billion New York State Common Retirement Fund is the third largest public pension plan in the United States with more than one million members, retirees and beneficiaries from state and local governments. Comptroller DiNapoli is the sole trustee of the fund and manages diversified portfolio of public and private equities, fixed income, real estate and alternative instruments.

About the New York Business Development Corporation (NYBDC)
The New York Business Development Corporation manages a loan portfolio of more than 1,500 small business loans totaling more than $550 million. In its most recent fiscal year ended September 30, 2007, NYBDC together with its affiliated companies, Empire State Certified Development Corporation and Statewide Zone Capital Corporation, advanced more than $125 million to more than 300 New York State small businesses. More than 35% of the total advanced went to women- or minority-owned businesses.

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