Business

Assistance Offered to Small Businesses Economically Impacted by COVID-19

As businesses close during this pandemic, the SBA is offering federal disaster loans. – Courtesy photo

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to California small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza announced Monday. SBA acted under its own authority, as provided by the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act that was recently signed by the president, to declare a disaster following a request received from Governor Gavin Newsom’s designated representative, Director Mark S. Ghilarducci of the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services on March 13, 2020.

The disaster declaration makes SBA assistance available in the following California counties:

 Alameda Alpine Amador Calaveras
Contra Costa El Dorado Imperial Kern
Lake Los Angeles Madera Marin
Mariposa Mendocino Merced Mono
Napa Orange Placer Riverside
Sacramento San Bernardino San Diego San Francisco
San Joaquin San Mateo Santa Clara Santa Cruz
Solano Sonoma Stanislaus Sutter
Tuolumne Ventura Yolo

SBA Customer Service Representatives will be available to answer questions about SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program and explain the application process.

“Small businesses, private non-profit organizations of any size, small agricultural cooperatives and small aquaculture enterprises that have been financially impacted as a direct result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) since Jan. 31, 2020, 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 disaster not occurred,” said Carranza.

“These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. Disaster loans can provide vital economic assistance to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing,” Carranza added.

Eligibility for Economic Injury Disaster Loans is based on the financial impact of COVID-19. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses. The interest rate for private nonprofit organizations is 2.75%. SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years and are available to entities without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov 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.

The deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is Dec. 16, 2020.

For more information about Coronavirus, please visit: Coronavirus.gov.

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March 17, 2020

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