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County loan will help Cameo avoid foreclosure

County loan will help Cameo avoid foreclosure

An Amsterdam employer facing tough overseas competition expects to maintain operations and overcome

An Amsterdam employer facing tough overseas competition expects to maintain operations and overcome foreclosure proceedings that started last fall.

Cameo Industries at 165 W. Main St. employs 16 people full-time making screen printing, embroidery, signs and promotional products.

The business has only a few weeks before a scheduled foreclosure sale of four of the company’s properties — but owner Stephen Testo said that is not going to happen.

“We’re not going anywhere,” Testo said.

The company is working on a restructuring plan which would include one piece of assistance from Montgomery County — a $120,000 loan for West Main Street Specialities, a business that is working with Testo to keep the firm operating.

Montgomery County Economic Development Director Ken Rose said he is aware of the company’s difficulties — many businesses that seek revolving loan funds need more help than a private bank is willing to give.

“We knew that they were at that level with the bank,” Rose said.

Cameo Industries received a $950,000 loan through the U.S. Small Business Administration and $400,000 of that loan was secured with the properties currently in foreclosure proceedings.

Court papers show the business stopped making payments in June 2008, resulting in the bank seeking to take possession of the properties.

Rose said the county revolving loan fund money would be secure either way: it would require collateral.

County Attorney Doug Landon said it’s his understanding that the county loan is expected to be cleared prior to the late-May foreclosure date.

That means the loan money, at least from the county, will be available in time for West Main Street Specialities and Testo to restructure Cameo Industries debt, thereby staving off foreclosure.

Paul Levine, who is working on behalf of First Niagara, said Monday he is not at liberty to comment.

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