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SBA Approves Governor Henry McMaster’s Request for Disaster Assistance In South Carolina

Flooded neighborhoods after hurricane.

SBA Approves Governor Henry McMaster’s Request for Disaster Assistance

South Carolina Gets An Aid Boost Following Severe Weather

Columbus, S.C., – In a significant development this week, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has approved the request made by Governor Henry McMaster for disaster assistance. Following severe weather events on June 10, South Carolina’s businesses and residents will now be eligible to apply for low-interest disaster loans. The disaster assistance has been approved for Berkeley County and the adjacent Charleston, Clarendon, Dorchester, Georgetown, Orangeburg, and Williamsburg counties.

SBA Unveils Disaster Loan Outreach Center

To facilitate the lending process and assist the affected businesses and residents, SBA will be setting up a Disaster Loan Outreach Center (DLOC) in Berkeley County. Starting from Monday, July 1, 2024, the DLOC will operate from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Located in Sangaree Library, the DLOC will remain operational on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; however, it will remain closed on Sundays and on July 4 for Independence Day. The center will permanently be closed after Friday, July 19.

During the operational hours, customer service representatives would be available at the center to help applicants understand the loan program, answer their queries, and assist them in completing their loan applications.

Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs)

Aside from providing assistance to businesses affected by the disaster, the SBA also offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs) for small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, aquaculture businesses, and most private nonprofit organizations. Even businesses that have not suffered any physical property damage due to the disaster can apply for EIDLs to mitigate their working capital needs.

Homeowners would be eligible to apply for loans up to $500,000 to repair or replace their damaged properties. Moreover, homeowners and renters could also avail loans up to $100,000 to repair or replace their damaged personal property.

Loan Terms and Conditions

The SBA may increase the loan amount by up to 20% of the verified physical damages for mitigation purposes. Mitigation improvements may include adding a safe room or storm shelter, sump pump, French drain, or retaining wall to protect the property and its occupants from future damages.

The interest rates are set as low as 4% for businesses, 3.25% for nonprofit organizations, and 2.688% for homeowners and renters, with loan terms of up to 30 years. The interest will not accrue nor will the monthly payments be due for the first 12 months from the date of the initial disbursement. The loan amounts and terms will be set by the SBA and based on each applicant’s financial condition.

Applicants can apply online or obtain additional information about disaster assistance by visiting sba.gov/disaster. SBA’s Customer Service Center is also open for inquiries at (800) 659-2955 or via mail at disastercustomerservice@ sba.gov. For deaf people or those with hearing or speech difficulties, they can contact the telecommunications relay services by dialing 7-1-1.

The deadline to return loan applications for physical property damage is August 23, 2024, while applications for economic injury loans will be accepted until March 24, 2025.

SBA Approves Governor Henry McMaster's Request for Disaster Assistance In South Carolina

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