The following questions and answers have been developed as a guideline to the program qualifications and procedures:
Who can apply for the DOT STLP?
DOT certification guidelines (49 CFR, Part 23 and 26) or by the U.S. Small Business Administration Section 8(a) Program; Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB); HUBZone Empowerment Contracting Program; and Service-Disabled Veterans.
Start up businesses are not eligible to apply for the STLP. It is recommended that a business have at least a three year past performance history before applying to the program. Start up businesses are advised to apply to the Small Business Administration for financing.
How much can I apply for?
Short-term working capital provides a revolving line of credit for which the primary collateral is accounts receivable arising from the contracts or subcontracts being financed. The maximum line of credit is $750,000.
How are the lines of credit provided?
The STLP is administered by the DOT OSDBU through cooperative agreements between DOT and banks called Participating Lenders (PLs). Loan documentation and financing transactions are performed directly by the PLs bank which offers the line of credit. It’s the choice of the applicant whether to setup a checking or saving accounts to access their line of credit.
How are the funds to be used?
Borrowing under the line of credit is to meet the short-term costs of performing the contract(s) being financed. Due to the STLP structure and the short-term nature of borrowings, funds are not available for: contract mobilization; equipment purchases or other long-term uses; refinance of existing debt; payment of non-current taxes; distributions or other payments to stockholders.
How are funds borrowed and repaid under the line of credit?
Funds are borrowed against each invoice of the contract (s) being financed. Each invoice is paid directly to the Participating Lender (PL) by the Project Owner or Prime Contractor via a two-party check addressed to the Lender and the Borrower. The PL deducts the payment amount, including interest payments, and remits the remaining balance to the Borrower is their checking and savings account.
How is the interest rate determined?
The interest rate of the loan is a variable rate tied to the Prime Rate published in the Wall Street Journal.
How long can the line of credit be used?
A line of credit normally covers a one-year period and one or more renewals can be requested. You can increase the line of credit during the term if you obtain additional transportation contracts. The term can be less than one year. The maximum length of time in the program is five years.
How does my company apply?
First, you must complete a loan application.
Completed applications should be forwarded to the Participating Lenders in your state. If your state is not listed, then you can send a completed application to OSDBU.
Additionally, review the STLP Checklists:
What types of information must be included with the application?
The application materials include a list of information items which support the application. Among them are the following:
Business and personal financial statements (3 years)
Business and personal income tax returns (3 years)
Cash flow projections (Term of the loan)
Current accounts receivable and accounts payable
Company profile/resume of officers
Current Personal Financial Statement
Certification that all taxes are current
Minimum of 3 business references
Where can I obtain assistance in preparing the application package?
Firms may consider utilizing the services of DOT's Small Business Transportation Resource Centers (SBTRCs), U.S. Department of Commerce's Minority Business Development Centers (MBDCs), Business Information Centers (BICs), the State Supportive Services Programs, local area Chambers of Commerce, and SCORE as possible sources for assistance or guidance in preparing application packages.
Who makes the decision for a line of credit application?
Final loan approval is made by both the STLP bank and by DOT.