Small nonfarm businesses in Box Elder, Davis, Morgan, Salt Lake, Tooele and Weber counties are now eligible to apply for low-interest federal disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration for damages suffered because of reduced revenues caused by drought in Davis County that last began last March. The announcement came from Director Tanya N. Garfield of SBA’s Disaster Field Operations Center-West.

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, Garfield said.

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 percent for businesses and 2 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 12.

Businesses primarily engaged in farming or ranching are not eligible for SBA disaster assistance. Agricultural enterprises should contact the Farm Service 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.

Information and application forms are available online at https://disasterloanassistance.sba.gov/. The deadline to apply for economic injury relief is Nov. 12.

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