LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Small businesses in several counties across the Southland are now eligible for low-interest federal disaster loans to help soften the economic blow of the coronavirus outbreak.
Los Angeles, Orange, and Riverside are among the counties that qualify.
The move comes just days after California Governor Gavin Newsom called for closure of all bars and wineries throughout the state of California and home isolation of those 65 and older. Several counties across the Southland followed the directive, shutting down bars, gyms, and movie theaters to help fight the coronavirus outbreak.
In addition to small businesses, private nonprofit organizations of any size, small agricultural cooperatives and small aquaculture enterprises that have been financially impacted as a direct result of COVID-19 since Jan. 31 may qualify for a loan of up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disaster not occurred, according to SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza.
“These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. Disaster loans can provide vital economic assistance to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing,” Carranza said.
The interest rate on the disaster loans is 3.75 percent for small businesses and 2.75 percent for private nonprofit organizations. SBA offers loans with long-term repayments, up to a maximum of 30 years, so that businesses can keep their repayments affordable.
Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications here. The deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is Dec. 16.
On Tuesday, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti announced that the city will implement a micro-loan program of $11 million to help about 2,000 businesses pay their employees and rent amid the economic impacts of coronavirus closures.
(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)