Governor Ron DeSantis announced that Florida businesses and residents affected by the March 12, 2022 tornado may apply for low-interest disaster loans from the United States Small Business Administration (SBA). The SBA disaster statement released includes Marion County and the adjacent counties of Alachua, Citrus, Lake, Levy, Putnam, Sumter and Volusia.
“Getting small businesses back on their feet after a disaster is important for the rapid recovery of affected communities,” said Governor DeSantis. “This assistance will put money in the hands of small business owners and residents and help them build back stronger.”
“Thanks to the leadership of Governor DeSantis, we are very pleased to announce this assistance to families affected by the events of March 12.and tornado,” said DEO Secretary Dane Eagle. “SBA Disaster Loans are a valuable resource for individuals and small businesses facing damage and hardship through no fault of their own, and those affected and in need are encouraged to apply.”
“This SBA disaster declaration will provide much needed relief to affected Floridians who are still recovering from the inclement weather,” said Florida Division of Emergency Management Director Kevin Guthrie. “The Division continues to coordinate with local emergency management offices and we are committed to supporting recovery efforts and ensuring disaster survivors have access to all available resources.”
On March 12, 2022, a cold front brought multiple extreme weather hazards to northeast and central Florida, including heavy rain, thunderstorms, damaging wind gusts, and isolated tornadoes causing power outages and widespread damage. Later that same day, Governor DeSantis issued Executive Order 22-56declaring a state of emergency in affected counties.
Following severe weather impacts, Governor DeSantis demand an SBA disaster declaration, which would provide affected Floridians with access to critical SBA recovery resources.
Disaster loan programs available to businesses and individuals in affected areas include:
- Physical Disaster Business Loans – Business loans to repair or replace disaster-damaged property owned by the business, including real estate, inventory, supplies, machinery and equipment. Businesses of all sizes are eligible. Private non-profit organizations such as charities, churches, private universities, etc. are also eligible.
- Economic Disaster Loans (EIDL) – Working capital loans to help small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small enterprises engaged in aquaculture and most private non-profit organizations of all sizes to meet their ordinary and necessary financial obligations which cannot be met as a direct result of the disaster. These loans are meant to help through the disaster recovery period.
- Home Disaster Loans – Loans to homeowners or tenants to repair or replace disaster-damaged real estate and personal property, including automobiles.
Disaster loan information and application forms can also be obtained by calling the SBA Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard of hearing) or emailing an email to DisasterCustomerservice@SBA.gov. Completed applications should be mailed to: US Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.
Submit completed loan applications to the SBA by May 27, 2022 for business physical disaster loans and December 28, 2022 for economic disaster loans.
For more information on disaster loans available from the SBA, click here.