Due to Oregon Gov. Kate Brown’s declaration of an emergency in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, a variety of businesses in Cannon Beach and statewide have had to close temporarily or limit the extent of their business.

Oregon restaurants are closed to onsite dining. Other businesses, such as bars, have had to close entirely, because their profits from the sale of food by delivery or take-out are not sufficient to allow them to stay open. (See related story.)

In an effort to provide financial assistance to such businesses, the U.S. Small Business Administration is taking applications to provide economic injury disaster-assistance loans.

Kevin Leahy, executive director of Clatsop Economic Development Resources (CEDR) and the Clatsop Community College Small Business Development Center, told The Gazette this week that the SBA has disaster loans available for businesses that have had to close temporarily, as well as for other businesses that are experiencing economic hardship as a result of the health crisis.

“The application process has been streamlined and the application is on the SBA website,” Leahy said.

Whether the loans will have to be repaid will vary depending on the applicant, he said.

Other resources, such as the new federal Paycheck Protection Program, will help companies retain their employees during the current economic downturn, he said. For more information, go to bizcenter.org.

In addition, the Cannon Beach Chamber of Commerce has information on its website about the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The chamber has put out a small-business emergency loans guide.

And the SBA.gov website describes an Economic Injury Disaster Advance Loan. “This advance will provide economic relief to businesses that are currently experiencing a temporary loss of revenue,” the website states. “Funds will be made available within three days of a successful application.”

“The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering designated states and territories low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19),” the website states.

“Upon a request received from a state’s or territory’s Governor, the SBA will issue under its own authority, as provided by the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act that was recently signed by the President, an Economic Injury Disaster Loan declaration.

“These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. The interest rate is 3.75% for small businesses. The interest rate for non-profits is 2.75%.

“The SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years. Terms are determined on a case-by-case basis, based upon each borrower’s ability to repay.”


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