With closures and restrictions mandated by the government in an effort to prevent the spread of the 2019 novel coronavirus, local businesses have needed the support of their neighbors and customers now more than ever.
St. Ansgar State Bank (SASB), an independent, locally owned and operated community bank with locations in St. Ansgar and Stacyville, saw that need and wanted to help address it.
SASB has doled out over $100,000 in cash and gift cards to neighborhood businesses, nonprofits and service groups.
The bank has a long history of contributing to area projects and businesses throughout the community. During the coronavirus pandemic alone, the bank has helped over 70 businesses qualify for forgivable payroll assistance loans, helping to secure pay to hundreds of people put out of work.
“The quality of life in our rural communities has been put in jeopardy. St. Ansgar State Bank is especially thankful for our local businesses and their front line workers. The Paycheck Protection Program has provided an opportunity for us to give that much more back to our service area, and we are happy to do so,” said SASB President and CEO Tim Halvorson in an emailed statement.
When the bank recognized the potentially devastating effects that the COVID closures would have on the community, the SASB team sprung into action and provided quick access to the Payroll Protection Plan (PPP) application to local business owners. The bank will eventually collect fees from the Small Business Administration for the applications, and will use those funds to disburse the greater than $100,000 in donations across SASB’s service area.
St. Ansgar State Bank has been serving the St. Ansgar and surrounding communities for 129 years.