Atlanta, GA - The U.S. Small Business Administration announced today that due to a steady decrease of activity, the Business Recovery Centers established in Franklin, Gulf, Santa Rosa, Wakulla and Walton counties, Fla., to assist those affected by the Deepwater BP Oil Spill will close Wednesday, Sept. 29, at 5 p.m. However, small businesses can still contact SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 for information on the low-interest disaster loans.
“I encourage anyone who has not completed their disaster loan application to visit the Centers before they close,” said Frank Skaggs, director of SBA’s Field Operations Center East in Atlanta. “After the Centers close, we will still be available to help any business owner requiring assistance with their application or to answer questions. Just visit one of our other Centers or call our toll free number,” Skaggs added.
The Centers set to close are located in the communities indicated below. All Center hours are weekdays, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., unless otherwise noted.
Apalachicola Bay Chamber of Commerce Economic Development Council
122 Commerce Street
406 Marina Drive
Apalachicola, FL 32320
Port St. Joe, FL 32456
Santa Rosa County
Navarre Beach Chamber Wakulla Agricultural Center
8543 Navarre Parkway
84 Cedar Avenue
Navarre, FL 32566
Crawfordville, FL 32327
Walton Area Chamber of Commerce
63 S. Centre Trail
Santa Rosa Beach, FL 32459
The SBA will have three remaining Business Recovery Centers in Florida. In Bay County, a Center will remain at the Small Business Development Center (SBDC), 2500 Minnesota Avenue, Lynn Haven, FL 32444 (open weekdays, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.). In Escambia County, a Center will remain at the Small Business Development Center (SBDC), 401 E. Chase Street, Suite 100, Pensacola, FL 32502. In Okaloosa County, a Center will remain at the Small Business Development Center (SBDC), 922 Mar Walt Drive, Suite 203, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32547 (open weekdays, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.).
The SBA is offering Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs) to small businesses affected by the Deepwater BP Oil Spill. Anyone with an existing SBA disaster loan that is experiencing economic hardship due to the oil spill can request a loan deferment. These loans and loan deferments can provide vital financial assistance to help eligible entities overcome the loss of revenue they are experiencing.
Interest rates on EIDLs are 3 percent for non-profit organizations and 4 percent for businesses with terms up to 30 years. The SBA sets loan amounts and terms based on each applicant’s financial condition.
Business owners unable to visit one of the Centers may obtain applications and program information by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for people with speech or hearing disabilities) Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. EDT or by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications can also be downloaded from the SBA website at www.sba.gov. Completed applications should be returned to one of the Centers or mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.
Business owners may apply for disaster loans on SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/.
The deadline to return economic injury applications is February 14, 2011.
For more information about the SBA’s Disaster Loan Programs, visit our website at www.sba.gov.