By Richard Jenkins
Special to The SUN
Tanya N. Garfield, director of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Disaster Field Operations Center – West, reminded small, nonfarm businesses in Archuleta County of the Oct. 6 deadline to apply for an SBA federal disaster loan for economic injury.
These loans are to offset economic losses because of reduced revenues caused by the drought that began on Jan. 28.
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 (EIDLs) of up to $2 million to help meet working capital needs caused by the disaster.
“EIDLs may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that cannot be paid because of the disaster’s impact,” said Garfield.
“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. EIDL assistance is available regardless of whether the applicant suffered any property damage,” Garfield added.
The interest rate is 4 percent for businesses and 2.625 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.
Businesses primarily engaged in farming or ranching are not eligible for SBA disaster assistance. Agricultural enterprises should contact the Farm Services Agency (FSA) about the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) assistance made available by the secretary’s declaration. However, in drought disasters, nurseries are eligible for SBA disaster assistance.
Applicants may apply online using the electronic loan application via SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.
For owners of these impacted small businesses, disaster loan information and application forms are also available from SBA’s customer service center by calling toll-free at (800) 659-2955 or by emailing email@example.com. Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing may call (800) 877-8339. For more information about SBA’s disaster assistance programs, visit http://www.sba.gov/disaster.