Local businesses eligible for SBA loans to offset drought losses

kleslie@thetribunenews.comFebruary 10, 2014 

Small, nonfarm businesses in San Luis Obispo County and about three dozen other California counties are eligible to apply for low-interest, federal disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration to offset economic losses caused by the drought.

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 drought not occurred, according to an SBA news release.

Farms or ranches are not eligible for the loans. However, in drought disasters, nurseries are eligible for SBA disaster assistance.

Eligibility is based on financial impact of the drought, not actual property damage, according to the release. The loans carry a 4 percent interest rate for businesses and 2.625 percent interest rate for private nonprofits.

Applicants may apply online at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.

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