Business Continuity and Disaster Preparedness

Business Continuity and Disaster Preparedness


NOTICE: If you own a business that has been physically or economically damaged by recent flooding in South-Southwest Florida OR Hurricane Irma, please fill out the Business Damage Assessment Survey.

Ensuring Tampa Bay area businesses stay open

Business Damage Assessment Survey

40% of all businesses that close following a disaster never re-open.When disaster strikes, businesses in the Tampa Bay region can find the education, training and assistance needed to survive through our Business Continuation Services.

Our professionally certified business consultants provide consulting at no cost, and training events to help you minimize losses and increase survivability when affected by natural and man-made disasters.

We can help business owners develop a plan tailored for your business, at no cost.

For questions about the Emergency Bridge Loan Program, the U.S. SBA Physical and Economic Injury Loan Programs, and how the Florida SBDC Network can help, please contact the Florida SBDC Network at (850) 898-3489 or Disaster@FloridaSBDC.org.  The phone line will be answered during regular business hours; all voicemails and emails will be responded to within 24 hours.

Types of Disaster Loans 

Florida Small Business Bridge Loan Program

When activated by the Governor, the Florida Small Business Bridge Loan Program, administered by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity in collaboration with Florida First Capital Finance Corporation (FFCFC) and the Florida SBDC Network, provides short-term, interest-free working capital loans intended to help impacted businesses “bridge the gap” between the time a major catastrophe hits and when a business has secured long-term recovery resources, such as insurance claims or federal assistance. Eligible businesses with two to 100 employees may apply for loans up to $50,000 for 90 or 180-day terms. Visit www.FloridaDisasterLoan.org for full details.

ATTENTION CITRUS GROWERS: On Oct. 6, 2017, Gov. Rick Scott activated a $25 million Florida Citrus Emergency Loan Program to support citrus growers impacted by Hurricane Irma.  The program, which will be a subset of the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program, will provide interest-free loans up to $150,000 to citrus growers that experienced physical and/or economic damage during the storm. The application period will begin the week of Oct. 9 and be open through Nov. 30, 2017.  For more information, visit http://www.floridadisasterloan.org/.

  • Eligibility Criteria: Primarily engaged in activities designated by one or more of the following NAICS codes: 111310 and 111320; Must provide evidence that it owns or leases one or more parcels of land on which citrus is produced; Completes the Citrus Production Report in the form provided by DEO.

Activated: Hurricane Irma

  • Eligible Florida Counties: All 67 counties in Florida.
  • Eligibility Criteria: Have been established prior to Sept. 9, 2017; Between 2-100 employees; Demonstrate economic or physical damage as a result of the disaster.
  • Loan Details: Amounts between $1,000-$50,000; 90-180 days based on individual circumstances; Interest-free for the loan term; Loan payments will be made directly to borrowers to Florida First Capital Finance Corporation, the State of Florida appointed program administrator; Check the FAQs on this page for non-payment penalties.
  • Deadline to Apply: November 30, 2017
  • Apply Onlinehttp://www.floridadisasterloan.org/

U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)
Business Physical Disaster Loans

Businesses and most private non-profit organizations located in a declared disaster area that incurred damage during a disaster may apply for a low-interest loan to help replace or restore damaged property if federal assistance is activated. SBA makes physical disaster loans of up to $2 million to qualified businesses and most private non-profit organizations. Visit www.SBA.gov for full details.

Loans to businesses to repair or replace disaster-damaged property owned by the business, including real estate, inventories, supplies, machinery and equipment. Businesses of any size are eligible. Private, non-profit organizations such as charities, churches, private universities, etc., are also eligible.

Activated: Hurricane Irma

  • Eligible Florida Counties: Brevard, Broward, Charlotte, Citrus, Clay, Collier, Desoto, Dixie, Duval, Flagler, Glades, Hardee, Hendry, Hernando, Highlands, Hillsborough, Indian River, Lafayette, Lake, Lee, Manatee, Marion, Martin, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Okeechobee, Orange, Osceola, Palm Beach, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk, Putnam, Sarasota, Saint Johns, St. Lucie, Seminole, Sumter and Volusia.
  • Loan Term: Maximum of 30 years but law restricts businesses with credit available elsewhere to a maximum of seven (7) years.
  • Credit Requirements: Applicants must have a credit history acceptable to SBA; Must show ability to repay all loans; Collateral is required for physical loss loans over $25,000; SBA takes real estate as collateral when available; SBA will not decline a loan for lack of collateral, but requires you to pledge what is available.
  • Deadline to Apply:  November 9, 2017
  • Apply Online:  https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela

U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)
Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL)

If federal assistance is activated and you are in a declared disaster area, have suffered substantial economic injury regardless of physical damage, and you are a small business, small agricultural cooperative, or private nonprofit organizations, you may qualify for an EIDL. EIDLs provide working capital to help businesses survive until normal operations resume after a disaster. SBA can provide up to a maximum of $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses. A business may qualify for both an EIDL and a physical disaster loan, not to exceed the maximum of $2 million. Visit www.SBA.gov for full details.

Working capital loans to help small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture, and most private, non-profit organizations of all sizes meet their ordinary and necessary financial obligations that cannot be met as a direct result of the disaster. These loans are intended to assist through the disaster recovery period.

Activated: Hurricane Irma

  • Eligible Florida Counties: Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Brevard, Broward, Charlotte, Citrus, Clay, Collier, Desoto, Duval, Flagler, Glades, Hardee, Hendry, Hernando, Highlands, Hillsborough, Indian River, Lake, Lee, Levy, Manatee, Marion, Martin, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Nassau, Okeechobee, Orange, Osceola, Palm Beach, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk, Putnam, Sarasota, Saint Johns, St. Lucie, Seminole, Sumter, Taylor and Volusia.
  • Loan Term: Maximum of 30 years but law restricts businesses with credit available elsewhere to a maximum of seven (7) years.
  • Credit Requirements: Applicants must have a credit history acceptable to SBA; Must show ability to repay all loans; Collateral is required for economic loss loans over $25,000; SBA takes real estate as collateral when available; SBA will not decline a loan for lack of collateral, but requires you to pledge what is available. See FAQs on this page for interest rate info.
  • Deadline to Apply:  June 11, 2018
  • Apply Online:  https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela

Two Mobile Assistance Centers (MACs)

The MACs are 38’ RVs outfitted as mobile Florida SBDC Network centers. As a principal responder in the state’s Emergency Support Function (ESF) 18 for Business & Industry, the MACs are deployed during a disaster to provide an on-the-scene workspace for our consultants to assist impacted businesses. When not in use during a time of emergency, the MACs provide services to businesses in rural areas of Florida.

Disaster Assistance App

As part of its service offering, the Florida SBDC  offers Bizaster, a free mobile disaster assistance app. Bizaster, available in both English and Spanish for Android and iOS,  features risk assessments, customizable checklists, and other resources to help businesses prepare, respond, and recover from natural and man-made disasters. Bizaster can be downloaded from the App Store or via Google Play.

Additional Resources

FAQ

Do I have to be physically located in a federally declared disaster area to be considered an “affected taxpayer?”
I own an interest in a partnership, or I am a shareholder in an S Corporation that is located in a federally declared disaster area. However, I do not live in the disaster area myself. I rely on information (Schedule K-1) from the partnership or S Corp to file my tax return. Do I qualify as an affected taxpayer for purposes of receiving filing and payment relief?
In the event of a disaster declaration, what FEMA assistance is available?
What is the interest rate on SBA physical and economic injury loans?
Is there SBA help with funding mitigation improvements?
Can I use my SBA loan to relocate my business?
Are there insurance requirements for SBA loans?
How do I contact the SBA if I have additional questions?
Is there help available through the SBA for refinancing?
What restrictions are there on SBA loan eligibility?
Is there a U.S. SBA Business Recovery Center in my area to assist me?
Is Disaster Unemployment Assistance available?
Is Transitional Sheltering Assistance available?
Can I get more time to file returns and pay taxes?
Is the Bridge Loan made payable to the business or the owner?
Do I have to repay the Bridge Loan in one lump sum, or can I make payments?
My business was failing before the hurricane. Can I use a Bridge or SBA loan to get out of the hole?
Can I extend my Bridge Loan beyond 180 days?

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