On Wednesday night, Gov. Rick Scott announced that the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) approved his requests and issued disaster declarations for South Florida due to the continued toxic algae and red tide problems.
Scott sent letters to the SBA on red tide and toxic algae back in August, requesting an Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) declaration.
“Governor Scott requested the federal Small Business Administration issue an additional Economic Injury Disaster Declaration for red tide in Lee, Manatee and Sarasota counties,” the governor’s office noted about the letter sent on ride tide. “This declaration will provide small businesses with low-interest loans so they can recover from the harm caused by red tide. Once the SBA has approved these counties, the state will quickly work to include other areas that have been impacted.”
The letter on toxic algae called for a similar declaration for Lee and Martin counties.
“With these disaster declarations, affected small businesses will be able to apply for low-interest Economic Injury Disaster Loans from the SBA,” Scott’s office noted on Wednesday.
“The Office of Disaster Assistance’s mission is to provide low interest disaster loans to businesses of all sizes, private non-profit organizations, homeowners, and renters to repair or replace real estate, personal property, machinery & equipment, inventory and business assets that have been damaged or destroyed in a declared disaster,” the SBA states on its website.
In addition to reaching out to the SBA, Scott issued emergency declarations for the parts of the Sunshine State impacted by red tide and toxic algae.
Last week, Scott won the Republican nomination to challenge U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., in November in what is expected to be a key Senate race with national implications.
Kevin Derby can be reached at Kevin.Derby@floridadaily.com.