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Disaster loans for businesses come with huge interest rates

Posted: 6:56 AM, Aug 22, 2018
Updated: 2018-08-22 12:38:42Z

FORT MYERS BEACH, Fla. – The water quality crisis is impacting Southwest Florida in more ways than one. But now, there’s a new loan program designed to help small businesses that are taking big hit.

Last week, Governor Rick Scott announced an emergency bridge loan program that will give businesses impacted by red tide or blue-green algae up to $50,000.

But the loan comes with an interest rate of 18% if it isn't paid back within 180 days or six months, and will accrue at 18% during the term of the loan.

On Tuesday, Governor Scott asked the federal Small Business Administration to help with lower-interest rates in Lee, Manatee and Sarasota counties.

Once the SBA approves it, the state will work to include other areas that have been impacted.