Small Business Administration Business Recovery Center
8:30-5 p.m. Monday-Friday
Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce
1 Chamber of Commerce Drive, Hilton Head Island
No Appointment Needed
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will hold a Business Recovery Center for Beaufort County businesses, non-profits and residents. The center can assist those impacted by Hurricane Matthew, and representatives can provide information about disaster loans, answer questions and assist in completing the SBA application. The SBA offers low-interest, long-term disaster loans for physical damage and working capital. To be considered for this assistance, those impacted by the storm need to apply by the deadline.The filing deadline to return applications for physical property damage is Tuesday, December 13. The deadline to return economic injury applications is July 12, 2017. Businesses and nonprofits can apply for up to $2 million to repair or replace disaster-damaged real estate, machinery, equipment, inventory, and other business assets. Loans for working capital, known as Economic Injury Disaster Loans, are available even if the business did not suffer any physical damage. Homeowners can apply for up to $200,000 to repair or replace disaster-damaged real estate. Homeowners and renters can apply for up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged personal property including automobiles. Interest rates are as low as 4 percent for businesses, 2.625 percent for private nonprofit organizations, and 1.563 percent for homeowners and renters, with terms up to 30 years. The SBA customizes loan amounts and terms based on each applicant’s circumstances.
Additional information on the SBA disaster loan program may be obtained by calling SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Loan applications can be downloaded from www.sba.gov. Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.
FEMA Assistance: Disaster Recovery Center
9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday / 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday
Hilton Head Island Town Hall
1 Town Center Court
Hilton Head Island, SC 29928
Click here for more information. The deadline to apply for FEMA assistance is Tuesday, December 13. South Carolina Emergency Management Division and FEMA have opened the Disaster Recovery Centers (DRC), where representatives will be on hand to educate citizens and businesses on the types of assistance available and to help with the application process. If you live in Beaufort County or Jasper County, you can apply for FEMA Individual Assistance, which helps those in with temporary rental assistance and essential home repairs for primary homes, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses and other programs. Register online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 800-621-3362. Business owners and non-profits, click here for more information.
If you or your employees were unemployed, had hours reduced or lost income as a direct result of Hurricane Matthew, you may be eligible for benefits. If you have employees take advantage of these “extra” Hurricane Matthew benefits, it will not count against you as an employer. Once the storm damage has been assessed and a disaster declaration has been made for a county, individuals have 30 calendar days to file for benefits. Click here for an explanation of benefits video with Robert Bouyea, Communications and marketing director for the South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce. More information can also be found here.
What are the first steps of filing an insurance claim? Click here for a video explaining the process with South Carolina Department of Insurance Commissioner Ray Farmer.
Beaufort County, Bluffton and the Town of Hilton Head Island have opened the emergency permitting process for building and repairing damage caused by Hurricane Matthew. Click here for more information about Beaufort County. Click here for more information about Bluffton. Click here for more information about Hilton Head Island.
Be wary of scams. Thousands of disaster workers will be coming into the state from all over the country. According to the South Carolina Emergency Management Division and South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, you should always ask for proper identification of service providers and ensure that the person or business has the appropriate professional license. Click here for a video on how to identify and avoid scams from the South Carolina Department of Labor Licensing and Regulation.
The South Carolina Department of Revenue is extending certain South Carolina tax deadlines for taxpayers in counties declared a federal disaster area. Click here for more information.
The Town of Hilton Head Island will provide a penalty grace period for Accommodation Tax and Beach Preservation Fee payments. The penalty grace period has been extended until midnight November 18. Click here for more information.
How You Can Help
-Donate to Community Foundation of the Lowcountry’s Disaster Recovery & Rebuilding fund by clicking here.
-Volunteer at Samaritan’s Purse, a non-profit organization set up at Bluffton’s Lowcountry Community Church. Call 843-295-2408 or stop by Lowcountry Community Church on Buckwalter Parkway.
-Sign up for the Community Foundation of the Lowcountry Volunteer Portal by clicking here.
Those with plans to travel to Hilton Head Island in the coming days are advised to check with their air carrier, hotel or vacation rental to confirm operations. The Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce will continue to monitor conditions and provide updates as they are available. Updates can also be accessed by following Hilton Head Island on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.