Arizona small businesses hurt by the coronavirus pandemic can apply for up to $2 million each in loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration now that the agency has accepted the state’s disaster declaration request.
Arizona’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan declaration was approved by the SBA on Thursday after Gov. Doug Ducey submitted a letter requesting federal assistance on March 16.
“Business across the state have already experienced significant economic losses and are anticipated to continue to lose revenue due to this pandemic,” Ducey said in his letter.
Businesses can apply for loans through the SBA website at SBA.gov/disaster.
The normal loan processing time for the loans is around three weeks, according to Jordan Ripley of the SBA’s Arizona District Office.
Ripley said there is no limit to the total amount available to Arizona business, but individual borrowers can be approved for up to $2 million.
The loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other expenses impacted by COVID-19. Interest rates are 3.75% for small businesses without other credit options and 2.75% for nonprofits. Long-term repayment options up to 30 years are available, with terms determined on a case-by-case basis, based on each borrower’s ability to repay, according to the SBA.
“Without a doubt, these tough times will take a significant toll on our economy and the livelihood of working men and women throughout the state,” said Chad Heinrich, Arizona State Director of the National Federation of Independent Business, in a statement. “This relief will go a long way to repair the damage done and protect Arizona families.”
Debbie Hann, chief operating officer of the Arizona Small Business Association, told the Business Journal her organization is just beginning to hear from people starting the application process and is ready to connect business owners to resources that can help if needed.
She said that a byproduct of the coronavirus crisis has been that various agencies and groups are working together to help businesses navigate the difficulties.
“We are truly wanting to help the small businesses,” she said. “It’s really a team effort for all of us.”
The SBA loans are available through the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Act signed by President Donald Trump on March 6.