A nonprofit loan fund for many small businesses on the Northside received a $250,000 award grant from the State Small Business Credit Initiative this month.

The Northside Community Development fund, a subsidiary of the Northside Leadership Conference, was notified of the award grant by the Pa. Department of Community Economic Development.

“We are thrilled to be recognized as a leader in our field,” said Mark Masterson, executive director of the NSCDF. “This is very exciting news. We were able to leverage our resources so that we can provide more financing to small businesses on the Northside of Pittsburgh.”

The money comes from the Small Business Jobs Act, which President Barack Obama signed into law in September of 2010. The Act created the State Small Business Credit Initiative, which supports lending to small businesses and manufacturers. It is expected to spur around $15 billion of lending.

More than 29 million dollars in federal funds have been allocated to the state of Pennsylvania to help leverage private lending, $250,000 of which will go to the Northside.

The Northside Community Development Fund finances many Northside Staples like Bistro To Go, Rita’s Italian Ice, J Francis Company and Bookminders Inc.

“All of these funds will go into low-cost loans to small businesses here on the Northside. The best source of hope in a neighborhood is a decent job,” said Masterson. “By supporting and investing in Northside businesses, we can help entrepreneurs and grow living wage jobs for Northside residents.”

Since 2000, the NCDF has financed over 120 Northside businesses and eight real estate projects and created over 700 jobs in the Northside.