Contractors are working to repair all the damage done to Oberer’s Flowers on Troy Street in Old North Dayton. Greenhouses and warehouses of both Oberer’s and Furst Florist were hit hard by the Memorial Day tornado. TY GREENLEES / STAFF

Small business tornado assistance is coming

Coupled with the good news from FEMA is this breaking announcement: The Small Business Administration will make low-interest loans available to businesses affected by the recent damaging tornadoes.

SBA representatives have met with Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce officials recently about possible low-interest loans in the wake of the record Memorial Day tornadoes.

>> President Trump declares disaster for 10 counties hit by tornadoes

Now, word has come through from the SBA, said Holly Allen, marketing director for the chamber.

 

“This does look like the declaration we were looking for,” Allen said late Tuesday morning.

SBA personnel have already begun looking for spaces to work here in town, and a online portal for loan applications will be set up, she said.

“Our big message to our businesses is: Apply for the loan,” Allen said. “Even if you don’t think you need it. If you are approved for a loan, you don’t have to take the money, but it at least opens up options and opportunities for you down the road if you find you need it.”

 

Allen said her understanding all along was that SBA low-interest loans would be made available if FEMA — Federal Emergency Management Agency — assistance was secured for the area.

“My understanding was that if there were a federal disaster declaration, that all of that kind of goes hand in hand, the FEMA funding and then the SBA low-interest loans,” she said.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced Monday that Ohio has received federal assistance for individuals in 10 counties impacted by tornadoes, severe storms, straight-line winds, flooding, and landslides last month.

President Donald Trump issued a Presidential Disaster Declaration for federal assistance for individuals and businesses after 21 tornadoes touched down during the severe storms that passed through Ohio during the evening of May 27 and early morning of May 28.

“We’re essentially looking at low-interest loan assistance for our businesses, whether they had physical damage or a loss of productivity because they were out of power or out of water for a period of time,” Allen said.

A message seeking comment was left with a spokeswoman for the SBA Office of Disaster Assistance

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