Small non-farm businesses in Snohomish and 14 other Washington counties can apply for low interest federal disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration, as of Sept. 6. The loans are intended to offset economic losses since June 18 because of reduced revenues caused by drought in four primary counties.

The primary counties where businesses are eligible for loans are King, Pierce, Skagit and Snohomish; neighboring counties also eligible are Chelan, Island, Kitsap, Kittitas, Lewis, Mason, Okanogan, San Juan, Thurston, Whatcom and Yakima.

Director Tanya N. Garfield of SBA’s Disaster Field Operations Center-West said 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.

Small nonfarm 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 that could have been met had the disaster not occurred.

“Eligibility for these loans is based on the financial impact of the disaster only and not on any actual property damage,” Garfield said.

These loans have an interest rate of 4% for businesses and 2.75% 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.

By law, SBA makes Economic Injury Disaster Loans available when the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture designates an agricultural disaster, which the Secretary declared on Aug. 29.

Businesses primarily engaged in farming or ranching are not eligible for SBA disaster assistance. Apply online by April 29, 2020, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. For more information on SBA disaster assistance, call 800-659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.

Load comments