Government opens Denville recovery center for Morris businesses hurt by Irene

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The federal Small Business Administration has opened a center in Denville where owners of small businesses affected by Tropical Storm Irene can apply for loans, the Morris County freeholders announced on Thursday.

It’s at the Denville Municipal Building, 1 St. Mary’s Place, and is open from 8 am to 5 pm on weekdays. Oct. 31 is the deadline to file applications regarding physical property damage. Applications related to economic injury must be submitted by March 31, 2012.

Here are details from the SBA:

FROM THE U.S. SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION:

ATLANTA –The U.S. Small Business Administration announced today the opening of a Business Recovery Center (BRC) in Denville.  SBA representatives at these BRCs can provide one-on-one assistance to business owners seeking disaster assistance for losses caused by Hurricane Irene that occurred between Aug. 27 and Sept. 5.

Firefighters prepare to rescue residents in Morristown's Second Ward after Tropical Storm Irene. Photo by Berit Ollestad.
Firefighters prepare to rescue residents in Morristown's Second Ward after Tropical Storm Irene. Note the flooded storefronts. Photo by Shea Jonah

“Businesses with physical damages or loss of revenue should seriously consider visiting a Center and applying for an SBA disaster business loan,” said SBA District Director Al Titone. “SBA’s disaster loans provide a way to help businesses get back in operation and the low interest rate and terms help make them more affordable than other types of financing.”  SBA also offers disaster loans to cover personal property losses and damage to primary residences. Interest rates are as low as 2.5 percent for homeowners and renters, 3 percent for non-profit organizations and 4 percent for businesses with terms up to 30 years.

The average SBA disaster business loan for this disaster is currently $121,000, which supports that businesses throughout New Jersey have sustained significant physical and economic losses.  SBA business applicants range from manufacturers and repair shops to restaurantiers, dentists, accountants and owners of rental properties.

SBA’s Customer Service Representatives will be on hand at the Centers to issue loan applications, answer questions about the disaster loan program, explain the application process and assist business owners in completing their applications.  Also, SBDC Counselors are available to assist businesses complete their application package.

Businesses and non-profit organizations of any size may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory, and other business assets.
The SBA may increase a loan up to 20 percent of the total amount of disaster damage to real estate and/or leasehold improvements, as verified by SBA, to make improvements that lessen the risk of property damage by future disasters of the same kind.

For small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture, and most private non-profit organizations, the SBA offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans to help meet working capital needs caused by the disaster.  Economic Injury Disaster Loan assistance is available regardless of whether the business suffered any physical property damage.

Disaster loans up to $200,000 are available to homeowners to repair or replace disaster damaged or destroyed real estate.  Homeowners and renters are eligible up to $40,000 to repair or replace disaster damaged or destroyed personal property

To obtain additional assistance call, the SBA Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955
(800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or send an email to disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.   Those affected by the disaster may also apply for disaster loans electronically from SBA’s website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/.

The filing deadline to return applications for physical property damage is October 31, 2011.
The deadline to return economic injury applications is May 31, 2012.

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