Rep. Andy Harris, M.D. announced that the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has declared seven counties on Maryland’s Eastern Shore a disaster area, thereby making available financial resources for small businesses negatively affected by the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic. The seven counties are: Cecil, Kent, Queen Anne’s, Caroline, Dorchester, Wicomico and Worcester.
Specifically, under an SBA disaster declaration, businesses can apply for low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital if they are suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus outbreak. SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loans offer up to $2 million in assistance per small business and can provide vital economic support to help overcome temporary loss of revenue. 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. Additionally, SBA offers these loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years.
Congressman Harris made the following statement:
“I thank the Administration for providing emergency assistance to small employers on most of the Eastern Shore. These resources are critical to our small businesses, employees, and local communities on the Eastern Shore, and I also hope to soon see the entire state of Maryland declared a disaster area as a result of the Coronavirus outbreak and receive the same assistance. This program will help small employers pay their employees and sustain businesses until the virus subsides and our local economy rebounds.”
Further information for businesses interested in applying for SBA loans can be found here. Additionally, Congressman Harris has joined a Maryland Congressional Delegation letter to the Small Business Administration urging them to declare the entire state a disaster area, which has been requested by Governor Hogan.