The D.C. BizCAP loan participation program, a $2 million small business loan program set up by the District in 2015, has still not made a single loan.
Since this time last year, nothing has changed for a lending program designed to help D.C. businesses run by minorities, women and veterans.
The federally funded program is supposed to work like this: D.C. buys a portion of a loan originated by a participating lender or community group at a subsidized interest rate, aimed at borrowers unable to meet the capital requirements of traditional loans. The overseeing agency, D.C. Department of Insurance, Securities and Banking, allots each participating lender $250,000 and must approve the loans they originate — which two former lenders told us last year has been a sticking point.
The program, which had at least three participating lenders when it started, is now down to only one community group, the Washington Area Community Investment Fund, which told me recently it had a potential loan in the pipeline that it plans to bring to DISB. But WACIF later declined to give any more information about that loan or address specific questions about the program, saying only in a statement that it had increased its overall loan volume by 60% in 2018 with plans to double that volume this year.