Home Press Releases Disaster Assistance Available for Lamar and Pickens Counties

Disaster Assistance Available for Lamar and Pickens Counties

MONTGOMERY—Governor Bob Riley said he is very pleased that the U.S. Small Business Administration will open a Disaster Loan Outreach Center in Vernon on Tuesday.  Residents of Lamar and Pickens counties may be eligible for assistance resulting from the severe storms and tornadoes that passed through the area on January 10.  These counties are eligible because they are contiguous to one or more of th e primary counties in a Mississippi Emergency Declaration.

“I am grateful to the Small Business Administration for setting up a help center for the Alabamians affected by these storms,” said Governor Riley.  “Homeowners and businesses in need of help are encouraged to contact the SBA for assistance.”

Frank Skaggs, Director of SBA Field Operations Center East, said, “Providing individual assistance is an important part of what we do to help people recover from a disaster.  SBA Customer Service Representatives will be on hand at the Center to issue loan applications, explain the process and assist individuals in completing their application.”

The location of the Disaster Loan Outreach Center is the Lamar County Jail Complex, 1118 County Road 9 in Vernon

The Center will open on Tuesday, January 22, and will remain open through Thursday, February 7.  Its hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Loans up to $200,000 are available to homeowners to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate.  Homeowners and renters are eligible for up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged or destroyed personal property.

Businesses of any size and private non-profit organizations may borrow up to $1.5 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, inventory, machinery and equipment.  The SBA can also lend additional funds to help with the cost of making improvements that protect, prevent or minimize the same type of disaster damage from occurring in the future. 

For small businesses only, the SBA offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans to help meet working capital needs caused by the disaster.  EIDL assistance is available regardless of whether the business suffered any property damage.

Anyone unable to visit the Centers may obtain an application by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the hearing-impaired), Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. Business loan applications can also be downloaded from www.sba.gov.  Completed applications should be returned to one of the Centers or mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX. 76155.

The filing deadline to return applications for physical property damage is March 17, 2008.  The deadline to return economic injury applications is October 16, 2008.