Disaster assistance available for hard-hit communities

Several area counties have been included in a disaster assistance declaration from the Small Business Administration after the severe weather that rolled through a few weeks ago.

According to the agency the disaster declaration covers the severe storms, straight-line winds and tornadoes that hit Indiana on March 31st and April 1st including Monroe and Johnson counties. Adjacent counties are also included in the declaration, with Bartholomew, Brown, Jackson and Shelby county businesses and organizations eligible for economic injury assistance.

Small businesses and residents in Johnson and Monroe counties could be eligible for business physical disaster loans, home disaster loans and economic injury disaster loans, while the neighboring counties could be eligible for just the economic injury assistance.

Those loans are meant to help organizations meet financial obligations that cannot be met due to the disaster. They are eligible to small businesses, agricultural cooperatives, small businesses involved in aquaculture and most private non-profit organizations. The economic disaster loans are limited to $2 million, but also are limited by business interruption insurance..

A business recovery center is opening Friday at Grace of Assembly of God Church, on U.S. 31 in Whiteland.