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Eligible businesses may apply for drought assistance

Eligible businesses may apply for drought assistance

October 12th, 2018 in Local News

Some businesses in many Mid-Missouri counties 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 this year’s drought.

Businesses in Cole, Boone, Callway, Camden, Miller, Moniteau and Osage counties may apply by May 13.

Eligibility covers both the economic impacts on businesses dependent on farmers and ranchers who have suffered agricultural production losses caused by the disasters and businesses directly impacted by the disasters, SBA officials said.

Small, non-farm 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 to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disasters not occurred.

Eligibility for these loans is based on the financial impact of the disasters, not on any actual property damage. These loans have an interest rate as low as 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.

SBA makes loans available when the U.S. secretary of agriculture designates an agricultural disaster, which occurred Sept. 12.

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 declaration. In drought disasters, nurseries are eligible for SBA disaster assistance.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may call SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, Texas 76155.