Updated October 6 at 4:06pm

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R.I. businesses face May 22 deadline for Irene disaster loans


ATLANTA – Small businesses affected by the excessive rain and high winds associated with Tropical Storm Irene have until May 22 to file for federal economic injury disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

The announcement for the Irene-related disaster loans did not originally include Rhode Island, but was extended to include businesses in Bristol, Newport and Providence counties.

“These counties are eligible because they are contiguous to one or more primary counties in Massachusetts,” Frank Skaggs, director of SBA's Field Operations Center East in Atlanta said in prepared remarks.

“The Small Business Administration recognizes that disasters do not usually stop at county or state lines,” he added. “For that reason, counties adjacent to primary counties named in the declaration are included.”

Businesses can request up to $2 million with a 4 percent interest rate for eligible small businesses and 3 percent for nonprofit organizations.

The SBA determines eligibility based on the size of the applicant, type of activity and its financial resources.

The economic injury disaster loans are not intended to replace lost sales or profits, but may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that could have been paid had the disaster not occurred.

Loan applications must be returned to the SBA’s Processing and Disbursement Center no later than May 22.

For more information, visit disasterloan.sba.gov.


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