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The State We're In connects with people in Central Florida and the greater Tampa Bay region about issues that matter to you. From the coronavirus to special coverage of politics along the I-4 corridor, it’s a chance to hear your neighbors, and better understand their experience.The State We’re In is a collaboration of WUSF Public Media in Tampa and 90.7 WMFE in Orlando and is part of America Amplified, a national community engagement and reporting initiative supported by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.[Join Us On Facebook]

For Small Businesses Applying For Emergency Loans, Timing Is Critical

Matthew Peddie, left, and Gaby Ortigoni
The State We're In / Facebook / WMFE & WUSF Public Media

Coronavirus has had a sudden and painful impact on Florida businesses.

Gaby Ortigoni is president of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metro Orlando. She said a lot of small businesses are trying to stay afloat by applying for emergency loans.

And they are learning that timing is critical, she said.

“People really need to be prepared,” Ortigoni said. “When it comes to filling out the paperwork, they cannot wait until the bank calls them back to then start putting all the documents together. Because that extra day, that extra hour or extra week that they are taking is going to cost them.”

CORONAVIRUS: Complete Coverage From WUSF And Health News Florida

Last week, the state issued 1,000 emergency loans to Florida companies before running out of money. More than 37,000 businesses applied for help.

Ortigoni spoke Tuesday with WMFE’s Matthew Peddie on The State We’re In – a Facebook Live show from WMFE and WUSF in Tampa. You can find the entire conversation on The State We’re In Facebook page.

This story is produced in partnership with America Amplified, an initiative using community engagement to inform local journalism. It is supported by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.