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Businesses in line for financial assistance

Business suffering financial losses due to the extended closure of the Kummer Bridge are eligible for financial assistance.

Nancy Porzio, director of the U. S. Small Business Administration’s Seattle District office, announced Monday that SBA will open a Disaster Loan Outreach Center in Black Diamond to provide personal service to small businesses economically impacted by the closure of the state Route 169 bridge across the Green River.

SBA opened the office Tuesday morning.

“SBA customer service representatives will be on hand to issue loan applications, answer questions about SBA’s disaster loan program, explain the application process and help each business owner complete their application,” Porzio said.

The center will be open 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. weekdays through Jan. 30 at the BlackDiamond Public Works Building, 24301 Roberts Dr. No appointment is necessary.

SBA acted on a request from Gov. Chris Gregoire for a disaster declaration due to the Kummer Bridge closure. SBA’s disaster declaration covers King County and the surrounding counties of Chelan, Kitsap, Kittitas, Pierce, Snohomish and Yakima.

SBA is offering low-interest disaster loans up to $2 million to help small businesses and most private, nonprofit organizations meet financial needs caused by the bridge closure. These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the bridge closure. The interest rate on these working capital loans is 4 percent with terms up to 30 years.

Disaster loan information and application forms are also available from SBA’s Customer Service Center by calling toll-free 800-659-2955, e-mailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov or visiting SBA’s Web site, www.sba.gov/services/disasterassistance.

The deadline to apply for these loans is Oct. 13.

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