State trooper Isaiah Oliver speaks to a BNSF worker at mile marker 31.7 as road closures and evacuations mount in response to the Bolt Creek Fire on Sep. 10, on U.S. 2 near Index. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

State trooper Isaiah Oliver speaks to a BNSF worker at mile marker 31.7 as road closures and evacuations mount in response to the Bolt Creek Fire on Sep. 10, on U.S. 2 near Index. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Federal aid available for groups affected by Bolt Creek fire

The Small Business Administration offers loans to businesses, nonprofit and farms harmed by disasters.

SKYKOMISH — The Small Business Administration is accepting applications for Economic Injury Disaster Loans from small businesses and nonprofits affected by the Bolt Creek Fire.

The fire, which started Sept. 10, burned more than 14,000 acres over nearly two months.

U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell has been working with the SBA to ensure the loans are made available as quickly as possible.

Small businesses, farms and nonprofits may apply for the loans to cover necessary expenses that couldn’t be met because of the fire.

“Highway 2 closed seven different times during the Bolt Creek Fire crisis, cutting local businesses off from supplies and customers,” Cantwell said.

“These low-interest loans can help small businesses pay their bills and retain valued employees as revenues get back to normal. We have to continue to improve the Highway 2 corridor and opportunities for businesses.”

The interest rates for the loans are low: 3.040% for businesses, and 1.875% for nonprofit organizations. Terms are up to 30 years.

No-collateral loans of up to $25,000 are available. The maximum loan amount is $2 million. The loan length and amounts are determined by the SBA based on the details of the application.

The filing deadline is Aug. 30, 2023.

Apply online at disasterloanassistance.sba.gov.

For more information call SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.

A fact sheet about the loans is available at tinyurl.com/53newvam.

Janice Podsada: 425-339-3097; jpodsada@heraldnet.com; Twitter: @JanicePods.

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