Stew Lilker’s

Columbia County Observer

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Columbia County News

Small Business Mobile Assistance Center in Lake City Monday Morning at Lowes

Small business disaster assistance will be available at Lowes, Lake City, Monday morning.

Jacksonville, FL – Tropical Storm Debby affected many small businesses in Florida and the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at the University of North Florida is ready to help accelerate the recovery process.

Phone: 904-620-2428
Fax: 904-620-2567

Utilizing the Florida SBDC’s Mobile Assistance Center (MAC), a 38-foot mobile RV equipped to be deployed and provide disaster assistance to small businesses post-disaster, certified business continuity professionals from the SBDC at UNF will make a visit to Columbia County on July 30 from 10:00 to noon at Lowe’s Home Improvement Store at NW Bascom Norris Dr. in Lake City.  Business owners who were affected by Tropical Storm Debby are invited to visit the MAC to find out more about disaster assistance options.

Three recently activated disaster loan programs that the SBDC consultants can assist businesses with are the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan and the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Business Physical and Economic Injury Disaster Loans.

The Emergency Bridge Loan Program provides an expedient cash flow to eligible businesses physically damaged by TS Debby. The short-term loans help bridge the gap between the time damage is incurred and when a business secures other longer-term financial resources such as an SBA Disaster Loan. Businesses with two to 100 employees may apply for $1,000 to $25,000 until August 15, 2012.

The SBA’s Physical and Economic Injury Loans provide eligible businesses and non-profits loan amounts up to $2 million not exceeding 30 years. The deadline to return applications for physical property damage is September 4, 2012; while the deadline for economic injury applications is April 3, 2013. Small businesses can find detailed information about the Bridge Loan Program at www.floridadisasterloan.org and the SBA’s loan programs at www.sba.gov.

The SBDC certified business continuity consultants are available for one-on-one assistance to help small businesses navigate through the recovery process at no cost. They are able to provide advice on disaster loan applications, management and technical assistance, and other post-disaster challenges. 

About the SBDC: Since 1976, the Small Business Development Center at the University of North Florida (SBDC at UNF) has helped over 35,000 small businesses in an 18-county area.  The SBDC at UNF, located at the UNF University Center, provides assistance through management advice and technical training with little to no-cost to the potential, fledgling and/or well-established small business owners.

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