Small businesses in 17 North Dakota counties can now apply for low-interest federal disaster loans to help them recover from losses due to the drought.
The U.S. Small Business Administration says the loans are available for small, nonfarm businesses in the primary disaster counties of Benson, Billings, Eddy and Ramsey. Businesses also are eligible in the neighboring counties of Cavalier, Dunn, Foster, Golden Valley, Griggs, McKenzie, Nelson, Pierce, Slope, Stark, Towner, Walsh and Wells.
SBA officials say eligibility for the loans covers businesses directly hurt by the drought and those that have lost money because they are dependent on farmers and ranchers who lost production because of the this summer's drought.
Small businesses, agricultural cooperatives and most nonprofit organizations may qualify for loans of up to $2 million.