Small Business Financial Help


We appreciate our community partners like Top of Alabama Regional Council of Governments (TARCOG). Who are they?


TARCOG helps local governments improve the quality of life for more than 649,000 residents in DeKalb, Jackson, Limestone, Madison and Marshall Counties. The Council does this by obtaining funding for local government assistance, coordinating local governments’ responses to regional issues, and providing a wide range of services to the region’s governments and residents. TARCOG helps member governments work together to address issues best solved cooperatively, rather than independently. TARCOG also provides services and technical assistance to different communities that are unable to provide their own personnel due to funding issues. The services are in three program areas: Aging, Economic Development, and Planning.


As part of their Economic Development TARCOG operates a Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) that helps local businesses finance expansions or obtain start-up capital. The RLF is administered at the regional level and local businesses from the TARCOG area with 100 or fewer employees are eligible. Loan amounts are generally $25,000 – $200,000 (although exceptions can be made) and there is a job creation (or retention) requirement. An advisor will meet with you at the Fort Payne Chamber of Commerce, free of charge to see if you qualify. You can find out more by visiting


The U.S. Small Business Administration can also qualify you for business loans. One thing to consider when thinking about a loan, you will need a business plan and financial projections just to get started. For more information you may visit


At the Fort Payne Chamber of Commerce, we offer free monthly business consultations through Jacksonville State University’s Small Business Development Center. They assist you with business plans, budgets, marketing plans and necessary start-up advice and resources. To schedule an appointment email


The Fort Payne Chamber of Commerce also hosts educational luncheons that provides information to assist our small business owners in being successful. If you aren’t participating in Chamber events and taking full advantage of our, often times free, resourceswhy not? I know we are all short on time, however you should make time for things that are important to you, like growing your business. We really do care and want to help our local businesses thrive. I hope to see you all next year at Chamber events. We are always available if you have questions or want to learn more about what’s going on at the Fort Payne Chamber of Commerce, shoot us an email at