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ATLANTA - The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced Oct. 13 that the disaster declaration for public assistance resulting from damages caused by remnants of Tropical Storm Ida Sept. 1-3 now includes certain private nonprofit organizations (PNPs) in Cape May County.

According to a release from the SBA, PNPs that do not provide critical services of a governmental nature may be eligible to apply for low-interest disaster loans. PNPs located in Bergen, Cape May, Essex, Gloucester, Hudson, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Morris, Passaic, Somerset and Union counties are eligible to apply. 

Examples of eligible non-critical PNP organizations include, but are not limited to, food kitchens, homeless shelters, libraries, community centers, schools and colleges. 

PNP organizations may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory, and other business assets. The interest rate is 2%, with terms up to 30 years. Applicants may be eligible for a loan amount increase up to 20% of their physical damages, as verified by the SBA for mitigation purposes. 

Eligible mitigation improvements may include a safe room or storm shelter, sump pump, French drain or retaining wall to help protect property and occupants from future damage caused by a similar disaster. 

The SBA also offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans to help meet working capital needs, such as ongoing operating expenses to PNP organizations. EIDL assistance is available regardless of whether the organization suffered any physical property damage. 

PNP organizations are urged to contact their county’s emergency manager for information about their organization. The information will be submitted to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to determine eligibility for a Public Assistance Grant, or whether the PNP should be referred to SBA for disaster loan assistance. 

Applicants may apply online using the electronic loan application (ELA), via SBA’s secure website, at disasterloan.sba.gov, and should apply under SBA declaration No. 17145, not for the Covid pandemic.

Disaster loan information and application forms may also be obtained by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center, at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing), or sending an email to disastercustomerservice@sba.gov. Loan applications can also be downloaded from sba.gov/disaster. Completed applications should be mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Rd. Fort Worth, Texas, 76155.

The filing deadline to submit applications for physical property damage is Nov. 4. The deadline to submit economic injury applications is June 6, 2022.

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