NM Governor announces disaster loans for Businesses and Homeowners
SANTA FE- New Mexico has seen wild fires blaze through part of the state, it has declared a disaster in Lincoln County as a result of the Little Bear Fire, now the Governor and SBA lend a hand to rebuild the lost homes and businesses.
The declaration will make low-interest loans available to homeowners, renters, and businesses that incurred physical damage from the fire. In addition, businesses that suffered economic hardship because of the Little Bear Fire may also be eligible for low-interest loans.
“When I met with displaced residents, responders, and local officials in Lincoln County, I saw their resilience and spirit. The announcement of these loans will go a long way toward helping them rebuild this inspiring community,” Governor Martinez said. “At the onset of this disaster, I directed my administration to look into any and all options to make assistance available to those affected by the fire. I am confident that Lincoln County will recover emotionally and economically, and the state will be with them to help.”
On June 4, 2012, a lightning strike started a small fire in the White Mountain Wilderness Area near the Village of Ruidoso in Lincoln County. By Saturday June 9, 2012, the fire had grown to 10,000 acres and threatened hundreds of homes. The fire destroyed an estimated 254 structures including primary residences, vacation homes, businesses, and outbuildings.
The SBA Disaster Loan program is separate from the FAME-administered Presidential Disaster Declaration.
“The area of Lincoln County affected by the Little Bear Fire was highly insured and also had a large number of secondary homes. As a result, the option of a Presidential Disaster Declaration was not possible,” Homeland Security & Emergency Management Secretary Greg Myers said. “Of the 254 structures burned, nine were uninsured primary residences. This was far short of the federally defined threshold of 173. While it might be frustrating to not qualify for FEMA assistance, we are fortunate to have other forms of assistance such as the SBA’s program.”
On June 16-20, 2012 a damage assessment was conducted by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the New Mexico Department of Homeland Security & Emergency Management to determine the extent and type of disaster assistance necessary to assist with recovery efforts. The damage survey indicates that at least 25 homes and/or businesses in Lincoln County suffered an uninsured loss of more than 40 percent. The minimum requirement to qualify for the SBA Disaster Loan program is 25 percent.