Business File: Occupancy for mountain towns increases in April

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Business File

Matt Stensland's Business File column appears Sundays in the Steamboat Pilot & Today. Contact him at 871-4210 or e-mail mstensland@steamboatpilot.com

Occupancy for mountain towns increases in April

The Mountain Travel Research Program reported that occupancy in North American mountain resort communities in April was up 0.8 percent compared with 2008, according to a news release. Occupancy was down 15 percent for the season compared with 2007-08, and lodging rates were down 9 percent, the release stated.

"The combined effects of lower occupancy and rate, compound to an approximate 25 percent decrease in overall revenues, an unparalleled single year decrease," said Ralf Garrison, author of the monthly report, said in the release. "And the impact of such dramatic declines have yet to be fully realized."

He cited an increase in the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Consumer Confidence Index as positive signs, however.

SCORE starts online community for services

SCORE, an organization that helps small businesses, has launched an online community at www.scorecommunity.org, according to a news release. PartnerUp powers the online community, which offers networking and access to SCORE services such as mentoring and advice.

Small businesses may be entitled to new loans

Small businesses might be eligible to receive temporary relief to keep their doors open and get their cash flow back on track through to a new loan program announced May 18, according to a news release from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Beginning June 15, SBA will start guaranteeing America's Recovery Capital loans. The loans are deferred-payment loans of as much as $35,000 available to established, viable, for-profit small businesses that need short-term help to make their principal and interest payments on existing qualifying debt, the release stated. The loans are interest-free to the borrower, 100 percent guaranteed by the SBA and have no SBA fees associated with them.

Loan repayment will not begin until 12 months after the final disbursement. Borrowers don't have to pay interest on America's Recovery Capital loans, according to the release. After the 12-month deferral period, borrowers will pay back the loan principal during a period of five years.

For more information, visit www.sba.gov.

Architecture group wins Young Firm of the Year

Rowland+Broughton Architecture and Urban Design was named Young Firm of the Year this month by the Colorado Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, according to a news release. The award was given at the Young Architects Awards Gala and recognizes a firm that has been in business 10 years or less.

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