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SBA Offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans to small businesses in Florida affected by excessive rain, flooding and water releases

By Staff | Apr 12, 2016

ATLANTA Small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture or private nonprofit organizations in Florida having suffered financial losses as the result of excessive rain; flooding and the water released from Lake Okeechobee that occurred on Jan. 3-29, 2016, should consider applying for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

SBA’s working capital loans are available after a disaster declaration by the Secretary of Agriculture making the following Florida counties eligible for assistance: Brevard, Broward, Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Glades, Hardee, Hendry, Highlands, Indian River, Lee, Martin, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Okeechobee, Osceola, Palm Beach, Polk, Saint Lucie and Sarasota.

These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that could have been paid had the disaster not occurred. The loans are not intended to replace lost sales or profits. Eligible industries include but are not limited to the following: fishing guides, commercial fisherman, charter boats, crabbers, bait and tackle shops, restaurants, retailers, wholesalers, farm implement dealers, and feed and seed stores.

The loan amount can be up to $2 million with interest rates of 2.625 percent for private nonprofit organizations and 4 percent for small businesses, with terms up to 30 years. The SBA determines eligibility based on the size of the applicant, type of activity and its financial resources. Loan amounts and terms are set by the SBA and are based on each applicant’s financial condition.

Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website at disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.

Disaster loan information and application forms may also be obtained by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or by sending an email to disastercustomerservice@sba.gov. Loan applications can be downloaded from www.sba.gov/disaster. Completed applications should be mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.

Completed loan applications must be returned to SBA no later than Nov. 16, 2016.