SBA Offers New Loan Program

The U.S. Small Business Administration has launched a public service announcement campaign to encourage small businesses that suffered economic injury from the terror attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon to apply for SBA disaster recovery loans.

The loan program, which began October 22, is unprecedented because it is available to small businesses across the country that have suffered substantial economic injury as a direct result of the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, or from subsequent actions taken by the federal government in response to those attacks.

Under the program, small businesses may apply for a loan of up to $l.5 million if they have suffered substantial economic injury in the aftermath of September’s terrorist attacks. These working capital loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that could have been paid had the disaster not occurred. The interest rate on these loans is 4 percent, with a maximum term of 30 years.

"I've heard from small business owners all over the country who have suffered losses. The President believes that the wider availability of these loans will provide the necessary capital small businesses need in a quick and efficient manner," said SBA Administrator Hector V. Barreto. "With the expansion of SBA's economic injury disaster loan program, small businesses across the country can receive help."

The SBA Web site contains press releases on this topic, and a fact sheet on the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program, which includes a set of Frequently Asked Questions on this program. The fact sheet and the FAQ page offers guidance on eligibility questions.

Mr. Barreto stated, "The SBA has a program to help small businesses across the country recover from the economic impact of the September 11th attacks. The SBA is offering economic injury loans with an interest rate of 4 percent, up to 30 years.

"If your small business was directly impacted by these events, or related federal actions, call the SBA at 1-800-U-ASK-SBA. Or visit the SBA Web site. Let's make sure that America is open for business."

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