(Host) Low-interest state loans are being offered to businesses and farms that suffered flood damage.
The $10 million program will be paid for through a combination of state funds and special economic development money.
Businesses will be eligible for a low-interest loan up to $100,000. There will be no payments for the first year.
Governor Peter Shumlin says the program is designed to respond quickly to business needs.
(Shumlin) "While the federal government is doing an extraordinary job, they tend to move more slowly than state government can. So what this program will do is, through VEDA, get cash in business people’s pockets immediately; to get the cash registers placed to restock inventory; to take care of costs that are there right now. If they don’t get done this week they won’t be open next week."
(Host) The program is modeled after a similar effort that the administration put in place last May to help businesses damaged in spring floods.
Many businesses said then they were pleased with how quickly the state was able to process their applications.
(Shumlin) "Our experience during our last flooding was when we invented this program, that we could get money to businesses with very little paperwork in 48 hours to get them back and running."
(Host) The state’s Joint Fiscal Committee also adopted a process for approving grants within a day to distribute food, emergency equipment, and financial contributions to those who need the money.