Manatee County announces resources for small businesses
MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. (WWSB) - The U.S. Small Business Administration had announced that it will be opening two Mobile Business Recovery Centers in Manatee County.
At the two locations, the Florida Small Business Development Center at the University of South Florida and SBA disaster specialists can help impacted small business owners understand available state and federal disaster loans, determine eligibility and apply.
The first center is located at the Manatee County Chamber of Commerce - Lakewood Ranch, at 4215 Concept Court, and is operating 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Thursday and Friday, October 27 and 28, and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, October 29.
A second center will operate at the State College of Florida - Bradenton, 5840 26th St. West, Building 8, Bradenton, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday, October 31, through Wednesday, November 2.
At the state level, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) has activated the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan (EBL) Program. This loan program provides short-term, zero-interest loans to small businesses who experienced economic injury or physical damage due to Hurricane Ian.
Loans approved through the Emergency Bridge Loan Program are intended to “bridge the gap” between the time a disaster impacts a business and when a business has secured longer-term recovery funding, such as federally or commercially available loans, insurance claims or other resources. Eligible small businesses, with two to 100 employees, may apply for loans of up to $50,000 through the program. Businesses must also be located in Florida, have been established prior to September 24, 2022, be located in an eligible county, must have been economically or physically damaged by Hurricane Ian, have a credit score of 600 or above and must have repaid all outstanding EBLs.
Low-interest Business Physical and Economic Injury Disaster Loans are also available from the SBA to eligible businesses, following the announcement of a Presidential disaster declaration that began September 23.For small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofit organizations, the SBA offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans to help meet working-capital needs caused by the disaster. Economic Injury Disaster Loan assistance is available regardless of whether the business suffered any physical-property damage.The Farm Service Agency (FSA) has also activated their disaster programs. For Hurricane Ian assistance, please call the FSA Producer Hotline at 1-877-508-8364, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
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