SHELTON - If you own a small non-farm business in Mason County and you think you took a financial hit because of this year’s drought, aid is available through the U.S. Small Business Administration. Mason and Thurston Counties are two of 15 Washington counties that qualify for federal SBA assistance.
“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,” SBA Director Tanya Garfield said.
Types of businesses that qualify for assistance also include small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofit organizations of any size. Assistance available is in the form of Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million. Loan amounts will be based on the company’s financial obligations and operating expenses that could have been met had the disaster not happened.
“Eligibility for these loans is based on the financial impact of the disaster only and not on any actual property damage. These loans have an interest rate of 4 percent for businesses and 2.75 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.
The U.S Secretary of Agriculture declared the drought disaster on August 2, 2019.
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.
The deadline to apply for economic injury is April 2, 2020.