LOS ANGELES – Six Southern California financial institutions were named Wednesday as recipients of nearly $330 million in federal funds intended to provide loans and other assistance to small and minority-owned businesses.

Awards from the Emergency Capital Investment Program funds were part of $671 million distributed to 10 institutions in California and nearly $9 billion nationally, according to the US Treasury Department.

According to the department, the funds are designed to allow financial institutions to “provide loans, grants and forbearances to small and minority businesses and consumers, especially in low-income and financially underserved communities that have struggled most during the COVID-19 pandemic.” COVID-19″. crisis.”

The Southern California institutions that received funding were:

— Broadway Financial Corp., Los Angeles, $150 million;

— Episcopal Community Federal Credit Union, Los Angeles, $38,000;

— Financial Partners Credit Union, Downey, $35 million;

— New Omni Bank, Alhambra, $39.9 million;

— Orange County Credit Union, Santa Ana, $35 million; Y

— PCB Bancorp, Los Angeles, $69.1 million.

Speaking to reporters Wednesday, Vice President Kamala Harris praised the national grants, saying small business success “requires access to capital.”

“To buy, for example, inventory, you need capital; to make a down payment, to hire employees,” he said. “So to grow, these smart, entrepreneurial people simply need access to capital. They have the ideas. They have the ability and the means to do the hard work, but they need access to capital.”

He noted that minority business owners often face tougher hurdles when applying for loans, “even when they have similar credit profiles as other applicants.”

Meanwhile, the Treasury Department also announced Wednesday that California will receive up to $1.1 billion from the State Small Business Credit Initiative, authorized under the American Rescue Plan legislation.

The funding, $10 billion in total nationwide, is designed to allow states and other government entities to “increase access to capital and promote entrepreneurship, especially in traditionally underserved communities as they emerge from the pandemic,” according to the Treasury Department.

“California is home to the largest and most diverse small business community in the country,” Governor Gavin Newsom said in a statement responding to the funding award. “We are a state driven by innovation and small business entrepreneurship; That’s why we’ve invested billions of dollars to help our businesses recover from the pandemic and to give more Californians a chance to achieve the California Dream. Thanks to this funding, underrepresented and underserved business owners will have more access to the critical financing they need to succeed and prosper.”