As the area public information offer for the U.S. Small Business Administration, Kevin Wynne has been meeting with chambers of commerce, service clubs and other community groups to make sure everyone in the area knows about the disaster loans that are available to residents of not only Snohomish County, but also members of the Stillaguamish and Tulalip tribes, as a result of the Oso mudslide.
“Homeowners may borrow up to $200,000 to repair or replace their primary residences, while homeowners and renters may borrow up to $40,000 to replace their personal property,” Wynne said. “Businesses may borrow up to $2 million for any combination of property damage or economic injury.”
Wynne noted that the $200,000 for homeowners would also cover the costs of relocation, if they chose not to rebuild in the same area.
Wynne added that, while most area businesses would be unlikely to be eligible for business physical disaster loans, since none that he’s aware of were located in the area of the slide, many small businesses and private nonprofits of various sizes would likely be eligible for the low-interest working capital loans called Economic Injury Disaster Loans,s
“The Economic Injury Disaster Loans are to pay your employees, keep your doors open and keep the lights on during your recovery,” Wynne said. “The application filing deadline for physical damage loans is June 2 of this year, but for economic injuries, it’s Jan. 2, 2015, because a business may not even realize that they’re losing income until they do their books later in the year. Especially considering how many small businesses are on the fine edge at the best of times, relying on their week-to-week revenues, a disaster like this can easily put any number of them over the brink.”
Whether or not they intend to apply for a loan, slide-impacted homeowners and renters who have not already registered with the Federal Emergency Management Agency should do so, either online at www.disasterassistance.gov or over the phone at 800-621-FEMA (3362). From there, those looking for loans may apply either online at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela, or in person at one of the following three Disaster Recovery Centers:
- The Arlington Public Works Administration Building, at 154 West Cox Ave.
- The Oso Fire Station, at 21824 State Route 530 NE.
- The Darrington Ranger District Office, at 1405 Emens Ave.