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Environment / Federal government / Finance / Small businesses

Disaster relief is available for businesses and nonprofits affected by Hurricane Ida, SBA says

Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware Montgomery and York counties are the agency's focus for primary counties for loans with this program.

Flooding on the Vine Street Expressway on Sept. 2, 2021. (Photo by Paige Gross)

Some members of the business community who were affected by the historic Hurricane Ida earlier this month are eligible for physical disaster loans through the U.S. Small Business Administration, the agency said this week.

Six Pennsylvania counties are included in the agency’s focus for primary counties: Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware Montgomery and York. These counties have physical disaster loans  available for businesses of all sizes, nonprofits, faith-based organizations, homeowners and renters. Small businesses and eligible nonprofit organizations will automatically be considered for a working capital loan when they apply for a physical disaster loan.

Three types of loans are available to businesses in these counties:

  • Business Physical Disaster Loans help repair or replace property, inventory, supplies or equipment damaged by the hurricane.
  • Economic Injury Disaster Loans are working capital loans to help small businesses that cannot meet their necessary financial obligations.
  • Home Disaster Loans go to homeowners or renters to repair or replace damaged real estate and personal properties.

An additional seven counties are included as contiguous counties, and are eligible for only working capital loans, known as Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs) that are available to small businesses and eligible non-profits. Those counties are Adams, Berks, Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lehigh and Northampton.

SBA also opened a business recovery center at Falls of the Schuylkill Library at 3501 Midvale Ave. for in-person assistance Monday and Wednesday from noon to 8 p.m., Tuesday and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

To be considered for all forms of disaster assistance, applicants should register online at or download the FEMA mobile app. Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website.

The SBA will consider your credit history, ability to repay and collateral for loans over $25,000. Interest rates are as low as 2.8% for businesses, 2% for nonprofits and 1.5% for homeowners and renters. The deadline for applications for this loan program is Nov. 9 for physical property damage and June 10, 2022, for economic injury applications.

Applications are free and loans do not have to be accepted, if offered. For a quick look at how the program works, check out the videos below:

Companies: U.S. Small Business Administration

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