Disaster Resources for Businesses
Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Recovery Assistance for Businesses
Important Hurricane Idalia Recovery Information
Employers Urged to Share New FEMA Pre-Registration Helpline for Assistance
Pinellas County continues to work with the State of Florida and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to obtain additional assistance.
If you have employees impacted by Hurricane Idalia, please share the FEMA Helpline for pre-registration for assistance at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). Residents who use TTY may call 1-800-462-7585. This information is used to help make a determination of our needs here in Pinellas County.
Please note, that homes impacted with even a few inches of water may be considered for major damage.
For assistance with lodging, food, crisis cleanup, and other services offered by area nonprofits, please visit https://pinellas.gov/emergency-information.
Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program Now Available
The Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program is now available at www.FloridaJobs.org/EBL. The program makes $20 million available for businesses impacted by Hurricane Idalia.
Who is eligible to apply?
Businesses in Pinellas County are eligible to apply by the October 25, 2023 deadline, or until all available funds are expended.
What kind of loans are offered?
The program, administered by FloridaCommerce, provides short-term, zero-interest loans, in an amount of up to $50,000, to small businesses that experienced economic injury or physical damage due to Hurricane Idalia. Loans approved through the Emergency Bridge Loan Program are intended to “bridge the gap” between the time a disaster impacts a business and when a business has secured longer-term recovery funding, such as federally or commercially available loans, insurance claims, or other resources. They are not grants; loans must be repaid by the approved applicant. FloridaCommerce administers the Emergency Bridge Loan Program alongside its fiscal administrator, Florida First Capital Finance Corporation.
Who can I call for assistance?
Visit www.FloridaJobs.org/EBL to learn more about the program, and view the lending guidelines and required documentation. Business owners who need further program information may call 833-832-4494 Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Eastern Time.
SBA Disaster Loan Assistance
The SBA is now offering the following disaster loan assistance to businesses in Pinellas County impacted by Hurricane Idalia:
Business Physical Disaster Loans – Loans to businesses to repair or replace disaster-damaged property owned by the business, including real estate, inventories, supplies, machinery and equipment. Businesses of any size are eligible. Private, non-profit organizations such as charities, churches, private universities, etc., are also eligible.
Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) – Working capital loans to help small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture, and most private, non-profit organizations of all sizes meet their ordinary and necessary financial obligations that cannot be met as a direct result of the disaster. These loans are intended to assist through the disaster recovery period.
Apply for assistance online- https://disasterloanassistance.sba.gov/ela/s/
Florida Business Damage Assessment Survey
Businesses are urged to respond to the Florida Business Damage Assessment Survey at https://floridadisaster.biz/BusinessDamageAssessments. Select “Hurricane Idalia” from the drop-down box and submit the survey online. The exact dollar value of your costs are not necessary; an estimate is fine.
This information will provide valuable economic impact information to the state and federal government as economic assistance options are evaluated. If you are in need of assistance with this survey or have other disaster recovery needs, please call (727) 453-7200 or email email@example.com.
To report residential damage or infrastructure damage, and to obtain the most recent Hurricane Idalia updates, please visit disaster.pinellas.gov.
Pinellas County Economic Development is your resource for emergency preparedness and disaster recovery assistance for businesses. Before disaster strikes, it’s important to know your risk, make a business continuity plan, and stay informed to protect your business. Disasters can take many forms and rebuilding after a disaster can be overwhelming. Having a plan, preparing for emergencies, and knowing what your company and employees need to recover and continue operations can help reduce financial impacts and help you reopen your business faster.
Need help with your business continuity and recovery plans? Get free business consulting and disaster resources from Pinellas County Economic Development.
Hurricane Season Starts June 1
The 2023 hurricane season has already begun. Pinellas County Emergency Management asks residents and businesses to practice emergency preparedness. Learn more about making a plan for this hurricane season.
Prepare Your Business for a Disaster
All businesses, regardless of size, need to be prepared in case of disaster or emergency. The ability of a business to get back up and running after disaster strikes is much easier if steps are taken before the disaster to prepare for such a possibility. Learn more about emergency preparedness and disaster resources for your business.
- Pinellas County Disaster Preparedness
- Florida SBDC Disaster Preparedness & Recovery
- Pinellas County Hurricane Preparedness Guide
- Alert Pinellas Emergency Notification Service
- Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council Business Continuity Guide
- Tampa Bay Association of Continuity Professionals
- Florida Division of Emergency Management Links for Business
- Ready Business-Tools from U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security
- Private Sector Resources Catalog from the Dept. of Homeland Security
Stay Informed During a Storm
- Use only trusted local information sources for timely, consistent, and reliable updates. Listen to, follow, and like Pinellas County Government (Facebook @PinellasGov and Twitter @PinellasGov); your favorite local news station; and the Tampa Bay National Weather Service forecast office on Facebook or Twitter.
- Monitor local news media, National Weather Service, disaster.pinellas.gov, Facebook @PinellasGov and Twitter @PinellasGov; search hashtag #GetReadyPinellas
- Sign up for Alert Pinellas to receive timely notifications.
- Own and maintain a NOAA weather radio – battery operated or hand crank.
- Sign up for:
Disaster Resources for Businesses Recovery
The Small Business Administration (SBA) provides low-interest disaster loans to help small businesses and homeowners recover from declared disasters.
Types of disaster assistance: