SBA Issued $ 800,000 in Flood Loans in McLean County; More than half rejected



The US Small Business Administration (SBA) has approved loans of $ 808,400 for homeowners in and around McLean County whose property was damaged by floods in late June.

County, state and federal government officials on Wednesday provided an update on government aid following the flood that led to the announcement of a disaster in McLean County… The SBA has provided long-term, low-interest loans to eligible home and business owners in McLean and surrounding counties.

US spokesman Rodney Davis, R-Taylorville, said the SBA had approved 23 loans as of Monday and received 66 applications.

Katie Beck, acting director of the McLean County Emergency Management Agency, added that 28 applications were denied and 15 others are still pending. Beck said six businesses have applied for loans; three were rejected and three are pending.

Beck noted that candidates must meet income and credit requirements.

“This is a loan, so unfortunately it will take a minimum of things because they want their money back,” Beck said, adding that the rules are less stringent than a traditional bank.

Beck appreciated more than 2000 houses and businesses were damaged during storms in late June, but she said the total number of damaged homes is likely much higher. Beck said there were no cost estimates. The county tried to obtain a federal distress declaration, but did not reach the damage threshold.

Davis said he was disappointed that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) rejected a disaster claim that could have provided additional financial assistance, adding that FEMA’s formula makes it nearly impossible for less populated areas to receive disaster relief.

“Nearly every downstream disaster will not reach this threshold unless FEMA is committed to doing what my law requires – taking local impacts into account,” Davis said. “In this case, they didn’t, and that’s unfortunate.”

Davis noted that SBA loans are designed to cover damage not covered by private insurance.

State spokesman Dan Brady, R-Bloomington, said the SBA and the Illinois Emergency Management Agency have responded to the hurricanes, but plans to find ways to lower thresholds for uninsured loss to provide residents with better options.

“It was a collaborative effort of state and federal resources trying to find help,” Brady said. “Yes, it’s disappointing because he’s trying to find that needle in the haystack that fits the right criteria for these people.”

Bloomington city plans to explore ways to provide direct assistance to homeowners affected by the June floods. Dozens of residents have complained that their basements were being filled with untreated sewage. The city’s insurance company rejected most of the claims due to what it considered the weather to be a “natural disaster.” Parts of McLean County received more than 10 inches of rain in less than three days from June 25 to June 27.

Brady thanked the workers and other volunteers who helped with the cleanup and damage assessment. “This is where this volunteer help and the experience of people like workers who left and at least helped evaluate became a lifeline for some of these people who fell between the cracks,” he said.

The deadline for applying for a loan to cover physical damage is September 24th. The SBA’s economic recovery loan applications will be available until April 26, 2022. available on the SBA website or by calling the toll free number (800-658-2955).


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