Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R) announced today that the first Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan was approved for a business that was greatly affected by Hurricane Sally.
It was announced that the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity would provide the loan to Brett Hinely, the owner of Bluewater Bay Marina, located in Niceville, Florida.
In a statement, the Florida Governor commented that “supporting businesses and helping employees get back to work is an important step toward helping Florida families, businesses and communities recover from the impacts of Hurricane Sally.”
Dane Eagle (R), the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity Executive Director, praised the Governor’s efforts, saying that “Governor DeSantis’ leadership and focus on supporting businesses and communities impacted by Hurricane Sally has been essential to helping Northwest Florida return to normal.” He added that the DEO is appreciative of the “partners at the Florida SBDC Network and Florida First Capital Finance Corporation, who have helped us review and approve these loans quickly to ensure those businesses are able to access this critical funding.”
Eagle concluded by assuring that “our team will continue to do all we can to help small businesses and families recover.”
The Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan program has allocated up to $5 million, and small business owners that have two to 100 employees located in Okaloosa, Escambia and Santa Rosa counties affected by Hurricane Sally are eligible to apply for short-term loans up to $50,000.
Eligible businesses are those that were established prior to September 14th, 2020, and they must demonstrate economic injury or physical damage that was a direct result of Hurricane Sally.
The application period is open until November 14th, 2020 or until the available funds have been expended.
The loan is interest-free, and it comes during a time when Floridians are also facing challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.