Residents and businesses affected by last month’s severe flooding in Kenosha County may apply for low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration, and an outreach center is now open to assist people with applications.
The loans became available after Gov. Scott Walker successfully requested a disaster declaration from the SBA late last week. This came after the southeastern Wisconsin counties that experienced significant flooding failed to meet the damage threshold to trigger a Presidential disaster declaration.
“The low-interest SBA loans will provide help for those who were impacted by the floods,” said Kenosha County Executive Jim Kreuser. “I encourage residents and business owners who have flood damage to seek this assistance, and to visit the outreach center that’s available.”
The Disaster Outreach Center will be open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays through Aug. 30, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 26, and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Aug. 31. It is located in the Kenosha County Center at the corner of highways 45 and 50 in Bristol.
Centers are also operating at the Western Racine County Service Center, 209 N. Main St. in Burlington, and the Walworth County Sheriff’s Office, 1770 County Road NN in Elkhorn.
Loans of up to $200,000 are available to homeowners to repair or replace disaster-damaged or destroyed real estate. Homeowners and renters are eligible for loans up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged or destroyed personal property.
Businesses and nonprofit organizations may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory and other business assets. SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans are available to help small businesses’ working capital needs, regardless of whether the business sustained any physical property damage.
The SBA disaster declaration related to the July flooding covers Kenosha, Racine and Walworth counties, plus the adjacent counties of Jefferson, Milwaukee, Rock and Waukesha in Wisconsin, and Boone, Lake and McHenry in Illinois.
“The SBA is strongly committed to providing the people of Wisconsin with the most effective and customer-focused response possible to assist businesses of all sizes, homeowners and renters with federal disaster loans,” said SBA Administrator Linda McMahon. “Getting our businesses and communities up and running after a disaster is our highest priority at SBA.”
Local organizations are also continuing to provide assistance to those affected by flooding.
The Sharing Center in Trevor has established a flood relief fund that has grown to more than $41,000. Donations are being accepted at www.thesharingcenter.net or in person at the center, 25700 Wilmot Road. For more information, call 262-298-5535.
A kickoff meeting for community, state and federal organizations and for interested individuals to discuss long-term recovery strategies for the flood-affected areas in Kenosha, Racine and Walworth counties will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 26, at Burlington High School, 400 McCanna Parkway. While the public is invited to attend, disaster assistance will not be available at this time. This informational meeting is designed to bring various individuals, groups and agencies together to discuss how to address unmet needs in the community. Those interested in attending are asked to RSVP at https://goo.gl/forms/05lDlmTRphRaAR4g1.