NEWS HEADLINES

Businesses eligible for disaster loans

By Messenger Staff | Published Saturday, September 8, 2018

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Small nonfarm businesses in 102 Texas counties, including Wise, are now eligible to apply for low-interest federal disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

These loans offset economic losses because of reduced revenues caused by drought, starting June 19.

“SBA eligibility covers both the economic impacts on businesses dependent on farmers and ranchers that have suffered agricultural production losses caused by the disaster and businesses directly impacted by the disaster,” said Tanya Garfield, director of the SBA’s Disaster Field Operations Center-West.

Small nonfarm businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofit organizations of any size may qualify for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disaster not occurred.

“Eligibility for these loans is based on the financial impact of the disaster only and not on any actual property damage,” Garfield said. “These loans have an interest rate of 3.61 percent for businesses and 2.5 percent for private nonprofit organizations, a maximum term of 30 years and are available to small businesses and most private nonprofits without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship.”

By law, SBA makes Economic Injury Disaster Loans available when the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture designates an agricultural disaster. The secretary declared this disaster Aug. 20.

Businesses primarily engaged in farming or ranching are not eligible for SBA disaster assistance. Agricultural enterprises should contact the Farm Services Agency about the U.S. Department of Agriculture assistance made available by the secretary’s declaration. However, nurseries are eligible for SBA disaster assistance in drought disasters.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may also call the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov for information on SBA disaster assistance.

Completed applications should be mailed to the U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.

The deadline to apply for economic injury is April 22, 2019.

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