Norton City’s Strong Gap Loan Program

Today’s local news focuses on the Norton City Strong Gap Loan Program, which is geared towards small businesses. In a recent week their program has exceeded more than $177,000 in loans to qualifying businesses. The Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority along with LENOWISCO Planning District Commission announced their own grants to area localities in their respective member regions.
According to Fred Ramey, City Manager for Norton, the program is funded with federal USDA Rural Development Grant monies. To date this program has approved thirty six loans and is still reviewing an additional half dozen applications for possible financial assistance. Ramey went on to add that an additional $50,000 will be added to the Norton Strong Fund.
Approved by the Norton City Council recently, this loan program is just a portion of its emergency declaration in the wake of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Geared towards actual brick and mortar businesses located inside the city limits, Norton Strong is intended to help these businesses stay afloat until federal level stimulus business loans and Paycheck Protection Funds are available to them.
Norton Strong loans have thus far gone to vehicle service operations, beauty shops, construction related businesses, entertainment, retail, restaurants, and tourism or other service related type businesses. Interested businesses can find Norton Strong loan application online at the City of Norton’s website at

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