SACRAMENTO, Calif., Sept. 13, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is making low-interest working capital loans available to small businesses economically impacted by the Las Conchas Wildfire that occurred June 26 through August 3, 2011, SBA Administrator Karen G. Mills said today. SBA acted under its own authority to declare a disaster following a request received on September 9 from Governor Susana Martinez.
The disaster declaration makes SBA assistance available in Los Alamos and Sandoval counties and the neighboring counties of Bernalillo, Cibola, McKinley, Rio Arriba, San Juan and Santa Fe.
"The U.S. Small Business Administration is strongly committed to providing the most effective and customer-focused response possible to assist New Mexico's small businesses with federal disaster loans. We will be swift in our efforts to help these small businesses recover from the financial impacts of this disaster," said Administrator Mills.
"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 (EIDLs) of up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disaster not occurred," said SBA's New Mexico District Director John C. Woosley.
"These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can't be paid because of the disaster's impact. Disaster loans can provide vital economic assistance to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing," Woosley added.
Eligibility is based on the financial impact of the disaster only and not on any actual property damage. These loans have an interest rate of 4 percent for small businesses and 3 percent for private, nonprofit organizations with terms up to 30 years, and are restricted to small businesses without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship.
Applicants may apply online using SBA's secure Web site at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.
The New Mexico Small Business Development Center (SBDC) is offering free, personalized counseling to help affected business owners in their recovery. Business owners may contact the SBDC in Los Alamos from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, either by telephone at (505) 661-4803 or by visiting their office at 190 Central Park Square, Los Alamos, NM 87544.
For owners of these impacted small businesses, disaster loan information and applications are available from SBA by calling SBA at (800) 6592955, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or visiting SBA's Web site at www.sba.gov/services/disasterassistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard-of-hearing may call (800) 877-8339.
The filing deadline to return economic injury applications is June 13, 2012.
For more information, visit SBA's Web site at www.sba.gov.
Media Contact: Richard Jenkins
Phone: (916) 735-1500
SOURCE U.S. Small Business Administration