Hurricane Katrina Forest Recovery

As we work together to tackle the historic challenge that Hurricane Katrina has presented to the forestry communities of Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama, we hope that this blog will be a valuable resource and tool.

Tuesday, November 22

Small Business Administration (SBA) Approves More Than $252M in Loans

Less than three months after Hurricane Katrina hit the state, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has approved approximately $252.1 million in low-interest disaster loans to help victims rebuild their homes and businesses.

Anyone with disaster related damages should register first with FEMA by calling 1-800-621-FEMA, then complete and return the SBA loan application. Interest rates can be as low as 2.687% for homeowners and renters and 4% percent for businesses. Loan terms can be up to 30 years. Actual loan amounts and terms are set by the SBA, and are based on each applicant's financial condition.

SBA also offers mitigation funds to disaster victims that have approved physical loans. SBA mitigation funds are designed to help borrowers fund protective measures to prevent damages of the same kind from recurring in the future. To help fund these protective measures, borrowers may request an additional 20% of their approved loan amount.

Additionally, disaster victims with insurance should not wait for a settlement before applying to SBA. If a victim does not know how much of their loss will be covered by insurance or other sources, SBA will consider making a loan for the total loss up to its loan limits, provided the borrower agrees to use insurance proceeds to reduce or repay their SBA loan.

Applications and program information are also available by calling the SBA's National Customer Service Center roll-free at 1-800-659-2955 or 1-800-877-8339 for the hearing impaired. Business loan applications may be downloaded from the SBA Web site at Applications may be returned to any of the Disaster Recovery Centers or be mailed to: U. S. Small Business Administration, National Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, Texas 76155.

The deadline for returning applications for physical damage is January 11, 2006; the deadline to return economic injury applications is May 29, 2006.

Mississippi Business Journal


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