Gov. Haley Barbour announced today he has requested assistance from the U.S. Small Business Administration to aid businesses that have been financially impacted by the Deepwater Horizon BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico since April 20, he said in a press statement.
“The oil spill has the potential to impact many small businesses across the Gulf Coast, and in some cases it already has,” Barbour said. “SBA loans are another tool needed to help offset the economic injury our coastal businesses are experiencing. Our maritime, fishing and energy industries are vital employers and significant components of our state’s coastal economy.”
If granted, the SBA disaster loans would be available to qualified businesses and nonprofit organizations in George, Hancock, Harrison, Jackson, Pearl River and Stone counties that have been affected by the ongoing spill. If BP compensates a loan recipient, the business will be expected to pay back the SBA loan.
Economic injury disaster loans would provide necessary working capital until normal operations resume after the impact of the oil spill disaster subsides. Additionally, Barbour has requested that SBA temporarily suspend loan repayments for Mississippi coastal businesses affected by the oil spill who have 2005 and 2008 SBA disaster and economic injury loans as a result of Hurricanes Katrina and Gustav.