One month left to apply for SBA disaster loans

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Low-interest loans available to directly, indirectly affected businesses

The Western News

The deadline to apply for a federal disaster loan for economic injury for small, non-farm businesses in western Montana is June 3.

In a release from the U.S. Small Business Administration, Tanya N. Garfield, director of the SBA’s Disaster Field Operations Center-West, reminded affected residents of parts of Montana and Idaho of the deadline.

The low-interest loans are intended to offset economic losses due to reduced revenues caused by drought in Bonner County, Idaho, and neighboring affected counties, including Lincoln, beginning August 15, 2017.

The interest rate is 3.305 percent for businesses and 2.5 percent for private nonprofit organizations with terms up to 30 years. Loan amounts and terms are set by SBA and are based on each applicant’s financial condition.

According to Garfield, small nonfarm businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofit organizations of any size may apply for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million to help meet working capital needs caused by the disaster.

According to the SBA release, 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.

Economic injury assistance is available regardless of whether the applicant suffered any property damage.

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 on Oct. 13, 2017.

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 https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard-of-hearing may call (800) 877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.

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