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SBA opens Business Recovery Center in Lincoln County

Financial assistance may be available for those who suffered property or income loss due to January’s severe storms. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering several disaster loans for those affected by the Jan. 9-13 storms and opened a Business Recovery Center (BRC) in New Harbor on April 23 to assist applicants.

SBA Public Affairs Specialist Monica Myles spoke at the April 22 Boothbay Harbor selection meeting about the loans and how people can apply for them. She said the SBA is authorized to make loans to homeowners, nonprofits and large and small businesses.

BRC representatives can help complete disaster loan applications, accept documents for existing applications, provide updates on the status of an application, and provide information about SBA disaster assistance programs. The BRC is located at Willing Workers Hall, 2604 Bristol Road in New Harbor. It is open Monday to Friday from 9am to 6pm and on Saturday from 9am to 3pm

According to the SBA, businesses and private nonprofit organizations of all sizes may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace disaster-damaged or destroyed property, machinery and equipment, inventory and other assets; the SBA can also lend money to businesses and homeowners to help with the costs of improvements to protect, prevent or minimize future disaster damage.

The SBA said disaster loans of up to $500,000 are available for homeowners to repair or replace property damaged or destroyed by a disaster; homeowners and renters are eligible for up to $100,000 to repair or replace personal property damaged or destroyed by a disaster.

According to the SBA, Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs) for small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives and aquaculture operations, and most private nonprofit organizations can help meet working capital needs resulting from the disaster. Myles said the loans could apply if an organization believes it cannot pay its bills as a direct result of a disaster; reasons may include loss of utilities, decrease in customer base, road closures or physical damage. She said that physical damage is not a prerequisite, but only damage to revenues as a direct result of the disaster.

The deadline for filing applications for property damage is May 20, and the deadline for applications for economic injury is December 23, because Myles said it can take an organization time to realize it has suffered financially from a disaster.

The SBA said interest rates are as low as 4% for businesses, 3.25% for nonprofits and 2.688% for homeowners and renters, with terms up to 30 years; Interest only begins to accrue and monthly payments are not due until twelve months after the date of the first disbursement.

Applicants can apply online and receive additional disaster assistance information at SBA.gov/disaster. They can also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email [email protected] for more information.

To qualify for all forms of disaster assistance, applicants can register online at DisasterAssistance.gov, download the FEMA mobile app or call the toll-free FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362.