FLORENCE, S.C. -- Florence-Darlington Technical College is hosting a U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Recovery Center on its main campus. The operation is a program of the South Carolina Small Business Development Center (SC SBDC). Even though Hurricane Florence was just a tropical storm when it lashed Eastern South Carolina last month, its heavy rains caused millions of dollars in damage to homes and businesses.
After the federally declaration of a disaster, the SC SBDC opened seven recovery centers in counties where water damage is still occurring. A spokesperson said the centers will stay open for as long as they are needed.
“Many business owners are facing extreme challenges. In addition to personal losses, they are dealing with varying degrees of physical damage and economic injury to their businesses,” said SC SBDC State Director Michele Abraham. “The SC SBDC is working closely with the South Carolina Emergency Management Division (SCEMD), the SBA and FEMA to help affected businesses minimize losses and increase survivability.”
SBA staff are on hand at the Tech site to explain how its low interest loans can help businesses recover from the floods. Some businesses may qualify for a 3.6 percent interest rate.
The SBA Business Recovery Center is located in the Ready SC Building on Tech's main campus. It’s open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. and is closed on the weekends.
Business owners and renters have until Nov. 20 to apply for physical damage loans. People with economic injury have until June 21. Applicants can also apply for loans at SBA’s secure website at firstname.lastname@example.org or call toll free at 800-659-2955.