The U.S. Small Business Administration announced Tuesday that it is offering loans to agriculture-related businesses in southwest Michigan because of the excessive rain and flooding in March 2019.
The Economic Injury Disaster Loans are being offered to small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small aquaculture businesses and private nonprofit organizations in Berrien, Branch, Cass, Hillsdale and Saint Joseph counties that suffered financial losses due to the extreme weather.
“These counties are eligible because they are contiguous to one or more primary counties in Indiana. The small Business Administration recognizes that disasters do not usually stop at county or state lines. For that reason, counties adjacent to primary counties named in the declaration are included,” Small Business Administration Field Operations Center East Director Kem Fleming said in a written announcement on the loans, release Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019.
The eligible businesses are based on the size, type of business and financial resources. Loans can be up to $2 million and interest rates for private nonprofits are 2.75% and small businesses are 4%. The amount granted and terms of the loan are determined by the administration and based on the condition of the applicant. Farmers and ranchers are ineligible for the business administration loans.
The U.S. Small Business Administration said the loans are meant to pay debts, payroll and other bills because of the disaster and are not meant to replace sales or profit.
The loan application deadline is April 29, 2020.
Applications forms are available by calling the U.S. Small Business Administration Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955, or 800-877-8339 for those with hearing problems. The forms also are available online at the administration website or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editor's note: This article has been edited from its original posting to correct eligibility information.