Disaster assistance for business owners is commonly provided through businesses insurance coverage but when a disaster impacts a large number of businesses in a community a variety of federal, state or other resources may be available to assist in recovery.
Department of Commerce
Recovering from a disaster usually begins by filing insurance claims, working with adjusters, and hiring contractors. It is critical for victims to start this process as soon as possible after a disaster in order for local emergency managers to assess the extent of unmet needs in the community. All other forms of assistance, including federal, state, non-profit and voluntary normally require insurance claims be filed before any assistance is offered.
The Minnesota Department of Commerce offers a Disaster Information Packet for individuals, homeowners and businesses to help guide them through the insurance and rebuilding process.
Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED)
DEED manages a variety of business development, assistance and recovery programs as well as worker assistance and job training programs to eligible individuals whose unemployment results from a disaster. Some of the appropriate assistance programs include:
- Minnesota Investment Fund
- Small Business Development Centers
- Temporary Workforce Centers
- Small Cities Development Program (SCDP)
In addition, DEED will also administer federal disaster recovery programs including National Emergency Grants (NEG) which can provide temporary work for displaced workers and the federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) program which can provide assistance to workers not covered by standard state assistance.
For more information, visit the DEED Programs Website.
Small Business Administration
In larger disasters, the Small Business Administration (SBA) may provide low-interest loans to help business owners rebuild or repair facilities or replace materials or inventory. In addition, even if a business or small agricultural cooperative has not suffered direct damages, loans may be made available to assist them through the disaster recovery period.