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SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans Available to Montana Small Businesses


SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Small nonfarm businesses in nine Montana counties and neighboring counties in South Dakota and Wyoming are now eligible to apply for low‑interest federal disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration, announced Director Tanya N. Garfield of SBA’s Disaster Field Operations Center-West. These loans offset economic losses because of reduced revenues caused by drought in the following primary counties that began Sept. 29, 2020.

Primary Montana counties:  Big Horn and Carter;

Neighboring Montana counties:  Carbon, Custer, Fallon, Powder River, Rosebud, Treasure and Yellowstone;

Neighboring South Dakota counties:  Butte and Harding;

Neighboring Wyoming counties:  Big Horn, Crook and Sheridan.

“SBA eligibility covers both the economic impacts on businesses dependent on farmers and ranchers that have suffered agricultural production losses caused by the disaster and businesses directly impacted by the disaster,” Garfield said.

Small nonfarm businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofit organizations of any size may qualify for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disaster not occurred.

“Eligibility for these loans is based on the financial impact of the disaster only and not on any actual property damage. These loans have an interest rate of 3 percent for businesses and 2.75 percent for private nonprofit organizations, a maximum term of 30 years and are available to small businesses and most private nonprofits without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship,” Garfield said.

By law, SBA makes Economic Injury Disaster Loans available when the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture designates an agricultural disaster. The Secretary declared this disaster on Nov. 20, 2020.

Businesses primarily engaged in farming or ranching are not eligible for SBA disaster assistance. Agricultural enterprises should contact the Farm Services Agency about the U.S. Department of Agriculture assistance made available by the Secretary’s declaration. However, nurseries are eligible for SBA disaster assistance in drought disasters.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard‑of‑hearing may call (800) 877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX  76155.

The deadline to apply for economic injury is July 20, 2021.

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BBC Reports on Colstrip


Jessica Lussenhop a reporter from the BBC visited Colstrip and reported on the impact that the election will have on Colstrip and looks toward the future. The article has had over 1 million views and has sparked great interest in Colstrip from people around the world. Please read the article and tell share your thoughts.

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Montana Announces New and Improved Business Filing System Coming December 7, 2020


Montana Secretary of State sent this bulletin at 11/24/2020 08:12 AM MST

Having trouble viewing this email? View the Web Version here.Logo Seal 500pxbsd-newSOS Enterprise for BusinessesThe Montana Secretary of State’s office is excited to announce the launch of a new and improved online business filing system!   The new system will be available on December 7, 2020.  What does this mean for you, our business customer?Business filings, UCC liens and notary filings are accessed in one system, SOS Enterprise.Step by step forms will easily guide you from start to finish through your business filings.Your current ePass login credentials will allow secure access to the new system, so that you can submit filings, order copies and certificates, or request other entity information.The filing process is much simpler! “Authority” to get access is no longer required for business owners, registered agents, attorneys, accountants, or other authorized agents.  Just log in, and you’re ready to file.To facilitate the launch of the new system, the on-line business registry will be unavailable at 10:00PM Tuesday, December 1st – Sunday December 6th.  On Monday December 7th, all business filings will be available in the new system.   Our Business Services Specialists remain ready to assist you.  By making our processes and procedures more efficient, we can continue to provide the immaculate customer service that you deserve.  Please contact us at 444-3665 or with questions.Thank you for your help in making commerce thrive in our great state of Montana!The Mission of the Office of the Secretary of State is to help commerce thrive, promote democracy, and record history for future generations.State Capitol Building | 1301 E. 6th Avenue | Helena, MT 59601 | 406.444.2034  |  Privacy Policy
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SBA News: EIDL COVID Loans Still Available.

  • STEP Grant Webinar, December 15 12:00-1:00 MST – State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) provides resources for businesses interested in taking advantage of e-Commerce to sell to customers overseas. The future is moving online faster than ever! Nearly 60% of the entire world’s population is on the Internet, and 95% of the world’s consumers are outside the United States.  See additional information below (bottom of this email, below my signature line) and to register.
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SBA Announces New Reduced 504 Loan Debenture Rates




Release Date: November 13, 2020                      Contact:

Release Number: 20-88          Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Blogs & Instagram

SBA Announces New Reduced 504 Loan Debenture Rates

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration announced the updated interest rates for the 504 Loan Program offered by Certified Development Companies (CDC). The program now allows for 10, 20, and 25-year interest rates at 2.231 percent, 2.364 percent, and 2.399 percent, respectively. Small businesses can now apply for a 504 loan at these low-interest rates.

“These are very encouraging terms and very supportive of our nation’s goal to bounce-back from COVID-19,” said William Manger, SBA Chief of Staff and Associate Administrator for the Office of Capital Access. “The longer terms and now lowest interest rates support and encourage entrepreneurs to step outside of the box and look at real investments.”

Partnered with the SBA are the CDCs, which are the driving force behind the 504 Loan Program. See SBA’s 504 Loan Program factsheet for more information on how to expand your business real estate or improve your working capital.

The 504 Loan Program is an SBA business loan program authorized under Title V of the Small Business Investment Act of 1958, 15 U.S.C. 695 et seq.  The core mission of the 504 Loan Program is to provide long-term financing to small businesses for the purchase or improvement of land, buildings, and major equipment, to facilitate the creation or retention of jobs, and to support local economic development.  Under the 504 Loan Program, loans are made in conjunction with private-sector lenders to small businesses by CDCs, which are certified and regulated by the SBA to promote economic development within their community.

For questions about the 504 Loan Program, please contact your local SBA District office.                                     


About the U.S. Small Business Administration

The U.S. Small Business Administration makes the American dream of business ownership a reality. 

As the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow, or expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster. 

It delivers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit

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Shop Locally or Else ********


Shop Locally

             or Else * * * * * * * *

Dear Editor,

The Shopping Local” theme always comes up around the Holidays but this year, due to the significant COVID-19 impacts, it’s even more important to support local businesses.  As eastern Montana communities continue to lose population and businesses, economic issues and needs have become even more urgent.  Most effective economic development starts at the local level.  That’s why supporting your local merchants is so vitally important during these challenging times.  Here are a few reasons to shop local:

* Local stores and businesses provide much needed jobs for our communities and pay taxes 

   which supports local government services and schools.  Consider that the next time you ask a

   local merchant for a donation.  Do the On-Line or out-of-town merchants give donations to our  

   local groups or support our local government services and schools?

* Shopping “Out-of Town” only helps “Out-of Towner’s.”  Sure you may save a few dollars on

   products and services but consider the high cost in traveling in dollars and time.  A shopping

   trip to another large Montana city would cost hundreds of dollars in operating vehicle expense. 

   You would have to buy lots of stuff in that big city to offset that expense.

* Give local merchants first chance at your business.  Vote with your dollars.  Now it’s very easy

   to say that there are not any good stores in town, or they do not have what I need, etc., etc., but

   I would encourage you to make a special effort to find your goods and services at the local

   level. Most of what you need can be found at local stores, if you look.  If not, ask a merchant to

   carry it or to special order it.  Whether it’s buying clothes, a burger or perhaps something  

   handmade at one of the arts and crafts shows, we all win if we support local businesses.

* Consumers vote with dollars so merchants need to listen to them and then take action.

* Merchants should be pro-active as well – do not wait for customers to come in – go get them.

* For seer survival, merchants need to evaluate and provide better customer Service, better  

   Savings and better Selections.

During this stressful Holiday season, let’s remember to make a special effort to support our local merchants.  If we don’t, who will? 

Jim Atchison


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Find Out More About SB 331 in Montana


Utilize this link to find out more information about SB 331 in Montana.

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Small Business Workshop and Open House



Please join us for a Small Business Workshop and Open House

Open to anyone and everyone

December 3, 2018 6:30 pm until 8:30 pm

Colstrip City Hall

Brought to you by: MT AFL-CIO, MCC, DCC, CDKC, Job Service, SEMDC and SBDC


Small Business Flyer

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Growth Through Agriculture Grants Due November 1st


Southeastern Montana Development Corporation wants to inform people of the Montana Department of Agriculture’s Growth Through Agriculture (GTA) funding cycle. The GTA program works to strengthen and diversify Montana’s agricultural industry by offering grants and loans to qualified agri-businesses for new agricultural products and processes.

Applicants are encouraged to contact SEMDC for assistance with their GTA application, financial projections, business and marketing plans. Projects may potentially be funded in a single application for a maximum total amount of $150,000 in the form of grant funding up to $50,000 and loan funding up to $100,000. Examples of project activities involve equipment purchases, advertising and promotion, and consultant services such as engineering costs. A dollar-for-dollar match is required for all proposals.

The Council may make a grant or loan if it determines that the project is consistent with the goals of the Growth Through Agriculture Act and:
1) primarily adds value to Montana’s agricultural products,
2) has the prospect for commercial success given current personnel, experience and resources of the applicant,
3) has the prospect to create and/or retain jobs in Montana,
4) primarily processes or adds value to Montana’s agricultural products currently produced or potentially produced in the state, and
5) has the management structure to allow the Agriculture Development Council to reasonably conclude that the applicant will comply with ongoing reporting and monitoring activities.

For more information about this funding opportunity go to or contact Julie Emmons at 406-853-6900.

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15th Annual Energy Open Held in Colstrip


Please see the link below to see results from the 15th Annual Energy Open Golf Tournament held in Colstrip, MT.

View Article

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