(b) "Eligible lending institution" means a financial institution that is eligible to make commercial loans, is a public depository of county funds and agrees to participate in the linked deposit program.
(c) "Eligible small business" means any business which employs fifty or fewer employees or has gross annual receipts of two million dollars or less.
(d) "Linked deposit" means a certificate of deposit placed by the agent with an eligible lending institution at up to and including five percent below current market rates, as determined and calculated by the agent, provided the institution agrees to lend the value of such deposit, according to the deposit agreement provided for by this article, to eligible small businesses at up to and including five percent below the present borrowing rate applicable to each specific business at the time of the deposit of county funds in the institution.
(b) An eligible small business shall certify on its loan application that the reduced rate loan will be used exclusively to create new jobs or preserve existing jobs and employment opportunities. A reduced rate loan shall not be used to refinance existing debt, unless such action is done to prevent bankruptcy. Whoever knowingly makes a false statement concerning such application shall be prohibited from participating in the linked deposit loan program and shall be subject to the penalties provided for in section eight of this article.
(c) In considering which eligible small businesses should receive reduced rate loans, the eligible lending institution shall give priority to businesses in areas which are economically depressed and to the number of jobs to be created or preserved by the receipt of such loan.
(d) The eligible lending institution shall forward to the agent a linked deposit loan package, in the form and manner prescribed by the agent. The package shall include such information as required by the agent, including the amount of the loan requested and the number of jobs to be created or sustained by each eligible small business. The institution shall certify that each applicant is an eligible small business, and shall certify the present borrowing rate applicable to each specific eligible business.
(b) Upon acceptance of the linked deposit loan package or any portion thereof, the agent may place certificates of deposit with the eligible lending institution at up to and including five percent below current market rates as determined by the agent. When necessary, the agent may place certificates of deposit prior to acceptance of a linked deposit loan package.
(c) The eligible lending institution shall enter into a deposit agreement with the agent, which agreement shall include requirements necessary to carry out the purposes of this article. Such requirements shall reflect the market conditions prevailing in the eligible lending institution's lending area. The agreement may include a specification of the period of time in which the lending institution is to lend funds upon the placement of a linked deposit and shall include provisions for the certificates of deposit to be placed for up to two-year maturities that may be renewed for up to an additional two years. Interest shall be paid at the times determined by the agent.
(b) The agent shall take any and all steps necessary to implement the linked deposit program and monitor compliance of eligible lending institutions and eligible small businesses. The agent, the state treasurer and the industrial development authority shall notify each other at least quarterly of the names of the businesses receiving financial assistance from their respective programs.
By the first day of January, April, July and October of each year, the agent shall report on the linked deposit program from the preceding calendar quarter to the county commission. The report shall set forth the linked deposits made by the county under the program during the quarter and shall include information regarding the nature, terms and amounts of the loans upon which the linked deposits were based and each small business to which a loan was made.