An Important Message to Disaster Survivors: Submit Your SBA Application After Registering With FEMA

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Release date: 
November 7, 2011
Release Number: 
1998-014

WEST DES MOINES, IOWA -- State and federal officials have an important message for homeowners, renters, business owners, and private nonprofits in the five counties (Fremont, Harrison, Mills, Monona and Pottawattamie) declared as disaster areas due to the 2011 Missouri River flooding.

To be considered for most types of disaster assistance, it is important to complete and submit a U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) disaster loan application.

“If you received an SBA application but haven't returned it, please take another look,” said State Coordinating Officer Patrick J. Hall, Recovery Bureau Chief for the Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management Division (HSEMD). “Homeowners, renters, and businesses who do not submit their SBA applications bring their disaster assistance process to a halt. If you have questions or need assistance, call FEMA or the SBA. They’ll be glad to help.”

Most applicants for disaster aid will receive an SBA disaster loan application after they register with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Some may not know that these loans are both for homeowners and renters, as well as for businesses of all sizes and private nonprofit organizations. Sometimes the application is ignored because applicants believe they will not qualify or need a federal disaster loan.

 “We have seen disaster survivors take themselves out of the assistance process when they don’t complete and return their SBA application, and then miss out on the full range of assistance available to them, including FEMA grants,” said FEMA’s Federal Coordinating Officer Michael R. Scott. “Returning the SBA application is an essential part of the recovery process.”

Applicants should be aware that:

  • Filling out the SBA loan application is a necessary step to be considered for most forms of disaster assistance.
  • SBA offers low-interest, federal disaster loans to homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes, and private nonprofit organizations, in the declared counties, for their uncompensated disaster losses.
  • SBA offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans (“Eidls”) to small businesses and most private nonprofit organizations, in the declared and neighboring counties, to help meet working capital needs caused by the disaster.
  • Disaster loans up to $200,000 are available to homeowners to repair or replace their primary residence. Homeowners and renters may borrow up to $40,000 to replace their damaged personal property, including vehicles.
  • Businesses and private nonprofits may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace their uncompensated property damage and/or economic losses.
  • Applicants may be eligible for more aid. If the SBA is unable to approve a loan, the applicant may be referred back to FEMA for other programs, including grants to repair or replace essential household items, clothing, or for storage expenses.

SBA service representatives are available at all Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) to issue loan applications, answer questions about SBA’s disaster loan program, help individuals complete their applications, and close their loans. No appointment is necessary.

FEMA and SBA continue to provide disaster recovery assistance at the following DRC locations:

Pottawattamie County
Human Services Campus
705 N. 16th Street
Council Bluffs, Ia. 51501

Fremont County
Emergency Operations Center
2014 290th Avenue 
Sidney, Ia. 51652

Monona County
Public Safety Office
909 7th Street
Onawa, Ia. 51040

Hours Starting Monday, Nov. 7: 9–6 p.m. M-F; Closed Saturday & Sunday
DRCs will be closed for Veterans Day on Friday, Nov. 11

Last Updated: 
July 16, 2012 - 18:46
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