Small nonfarm businesses in Douglas, Alpine and Mono counties are eligible to apply for low interest federal disaster loans, but not for the reason you might think.
The three counties are among 58 eligible for loans to counter reduced revenues caused by drought, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration.
Eight of Nevada’s 17 counties are included on the list, including Carson City, Clark, Esmeralda, Lyon, Mineral, Nye and Washoe.
Meanwhile, the Nevada Division of Emergency Management has formally requested the Federal Emergency Management Agency to conduct a joint Federal-State Preliminary Damage Assessment team in Churchill, Douglas, Eureka, Lyon, Lincoln and Storey counties, and the Yomba Shoshone Tribe.
County officials worked closely with the state assessment team to determine the amount of damage to public infrastructure from flooding as well as attempting to determine private property damage following state and FEMA damage assessment criteria.
Once the preliminary assessments are complete, Gov. Joe Lombardo, based on the data provided, will determine whether a major disaster declaration request should be made.
It's possible that should there be a federal declaration, small nonfarm businesses could apply for small business loans for both drought and flooding.
The loans are designed to offset the economic losses due to the drought starting Oct. 1, 2022.
“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,” said Disaster Field Operations Center-West Director Tanya N. Garfield of SBA’s Garfield.
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 disaster not occurred.
“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 3.040 percent for businesses and 1.875 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 Disaster Loans available when the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture designates an agricultural disaster. The Secretary declared this disaster on March 17, even as most of the West was being deluged by one wet storm after another.
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, nurseries are eligible for SBA disaster assistance in drought disasters.
Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at https://disasterloanassistance.sba.gov/. 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 Nov. 17.
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