SBA loans available for drought damage | Local

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ATLANTA — The U.S. Small Business Administration announced today that federal Economic injury Disaster Loans are available in South Carolina for small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture, and most private nonprofit organizations with economic losses due to drought that began on May 10.

The declaration includes the primary counties of Beaufort, Colleton, Hampton and Jasper in South Carolina; and the adjacent counties of Allendale, Bamberg, Charleston, Dorchester and Orangeburg in South Carolina; and Chatham, Effingham and Screven in Georgia.

“When the Secretary of Agriculture issues a disaster declaration to help farmers recover from damages and losses to crops, the Small Business Administration issues a declaration to eligible entities, affected by the same disaster,” said Kem Fleming, director of SBA’s Field Operations Center East.

Under this declaration, the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan  program is available to eligible farm-related and nonfarm-related entities that suffered financial losses as a direct result of this disaster. Apart from aquaculture enterprises, SBA cannot provide disaster loans to agricultural producers, farmers, and ranchers. Nurseries are eligible to apply for economic injury disaster loans for losses caused by drought conditions. 

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The loan amount can be up to $2 million with interest rates of 2.935 percent for small businesses and 1.875 percent for private nonprofit organizations, with terms up to 30 years. These working capital loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that could have been paid had the disaster not occurred. The loans are not intended to replace lost sales or profits.

Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via the SBA’s secure website at DisasterLoanAssistance.sba.gov/ela/s/ and should apply under SBA declaration # 17513.

Disaster loan information and application forms may also be obtained by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (if you are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability, please dial 7-1-1 to access telecommunications relay services), or sending an email to [email protected] Loan applications can be downloaded from the SBA’s website at sba.gov/disaster. Completed applications should be mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.


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Submit completed loan applications to the SBA no later than March 1, 2023.

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