Bipartisan Reps. Introduce Bill To Improve Disaster Relief for Businesses
Washington, DC – Today, Representatives Mike Thompson (CA-05), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL-27), Jared Huffman (CA-01), Alcee Hastings (FL-20), Debbie Wasserman-Shultz (FL-23), Charlie Crist (FL-13), Stephanie Murphy (FL-07), and Peter King (NY-2) introduced H.R. 4148, the Small Business Disaster Relief Act, bipartisan legislation to improve the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) disaster relief efforts.
This legislation would give SBA and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency more flexibility in setting the terms and conditions of disaster loans to businesses vital to recovery such as debris removal, gasoline supply, and telecommunications. It would also authorize SBA to make grants to small business development centers to provide technical assistance to small businesses after a disaster, and encourage SBA to use local district offices to expedite the processing of disaster loan applications.
“The fires that have torn through Northern California have burned 200 businesses to the ground, devastating not only business owners and employees, but the people who count on their services,” Rep. Thompson said. “Today, we’re putting forth the bipartisan Small Business Disaster Relief Act to improve the way the Small Business Administration delivers vital relief aid to businesses that have been impacted by wildfires, hurricanes, and other natural disasters. By helping local businesses restart critical services in disaster-struck areas, we can speed up the overall recovery and rebuilding efforts in these communities.”
“South Florida small businesses are still feeling the impacts of Hurricane Irma and we must continue to work arduously to help them recover,” Rep. Ros-Lehtinen said. “I cosponsored the Small Business Disaster Relief Act with my colleague, Mike, in order to expedite loans to small businesses that need financial help. Allowing for greater flexibility regarding these loans will assist those whose businesses are their livelihoods and incentivize job creation in our community as those impacted get back on their financial feet.”