SBA Loans Available to Tornado Victims

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It's been a little over three-weeks since a tornado ripped through Apalachicola, damaging or destroying dozens of businesses and homes.

Some owners have been complaining they haven't received any help whatsoever.

However, that changed Tuesday with the help of a federal agency.

Franklin County asked for it. Now, it's here. They are loans from the federal government to help victims get on their feet, after a twister tore through their town.

Sandra Faubert of the Small Business Administration said, "We're providing a low interest rate loan for the replacement of damage to their property as a result of the tornado.

For Faubert, the next few weeks will be a quest to help victims of last month's twister find a way to get back to the status quo. "We're very liberal in the sense of being to help the victims," she says.

Faubert is ready to help, and apparently people are accepting her offer. "We had a very good traffic flow this morning," she said Tuesday.

The county's Emergency Management Center estimates the tornado destroyed six to eight homes, while another 25 to 30 suffered major damage.

The SBA will loan homeowners up to $200,000 dollars to help fix their property.

Homeowners and renters can receive up to $40,000 dollars to replace their personal belongings.

Franklin County Emergency Director Butch Baker said, "We got a lot of folks that don't have a lot of money, and the low interest loans will give them a chance to rebuild, and put their lives back together."

Baker also says this is a big help for some in this community, adding, "It's the old thing about every cloud has a silver lining. Well, the SBA could be a silver lining for a lot of folks.”

You can apply for the loans at the Franklin County Emergency Operations Center. Officials say they will be there from about 8 AM until 4:30PM, Monday through Friday. They will be closed Thanksgiving, but will reopen this Saturday only, to help you get on your road to recovery."

Businesses owners can qualify for the SBA loans as well. All you have to do is stop by Franklin’s EOC to apply.

SBA representatives say they will be in town for about two weeks so the sooner you stop by, the better.