RBC | Small nonfarm businesses in Rio Blanco County 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 drought conditions in Moffat County and neighboring Rio Blanco and Routt counties in Colorado, Daggett and Uintah counties in Utah, and Carbon and Sweetwater counties in Wyoming.
“SBA eligibility covers both the economic impacts on businesses dependent on farmers and ranchers that have suffered agricultural production losses caused by the disasters and businesses directly impacted by the disasters,” Garfield said.
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 which could have been met had the disasters not occurred.
“Eligibility for these loans is based on the financial impact of the disasters only and not on any actual property damage. These loans have an interest rate of 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,” Garfield said.
By law, SBA makes economic injury available when the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture designates an agricultural disaster.
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, in drought disasters nurseries are eligible for SBA disaster assistance.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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.