EDC-VC Announces Additional Resources Available for Thomas Fire and Flood Victims

The Economic Development Collaborative–Ventura County’s special services coordinator, Clare Briglio, has announced additional resources now available for businesses recovering from the impact of the Thomas Fire and subsequent floods and mudslides.  

“New federal declarations have secured additional resources for those who have suffered personal and/or business injury as a result of the Thomas Fire and subsequent mudslides and floods,” explained Briglio. “To take full advantage of these new federal resources, business owners are encouraged to follow this three-step process. For direct in-person assistance in filing with FEMA or the SBA, please visit a Disaster Recovery Center in your area. In addition, EDC-VC has compiled an online list of resources at http://edc-vc.com/disaster-recovery-services/.” 

To access available federal fire and flood relief resources, people should follow this three-step process:  

Step 1: Registration with FEMA Clients who have been impacted by the Thomas Fire and subsequent flood and are interested in government assistance should apply online at DisasterAssistance.gov or by phone at 1-800-621-3362. The toll-free numbers are open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week.  

NOTE: The filing deadline to return FEMA applications for property damage is March 16, 2018. The deadline to return economic injury applications is Oct. 15, 2018. 

Applicants should have the following information at hand: 

  •          Social Security number.
  •          Address of the damaged primary residence.
  •          Description of the damage.
  •          Information about insurance coverage.
  •          A current contact telephone number.
  •          An address where they can receive mail.
  •          Bank account and routing numbers for direct deposit of funds.

Step 2: Registration with the SBA for low-interest loans Low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) are available for businesses of all sizes (including landlords), private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters. Disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries. This includes Economic Injury Disaster loans for businesses that may or may not have sustained any damage, but have experienced a downturn in business because of the disaster. The SBA customer service center is also available to answer questions at 1-800-659-2955. Applicants may also come in to a Local Recovery Center (LRC) for person-to-person assistance in completing their applications. For further information, visit SBA’s website at www.sba.gov/disaster. 

Step 3: Registration with EDD for unemployment benefits  Federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) benefits are now available for workers, business owners and self-employed individuals who lost their jobs or had their work hours substantially reduced as a result of the wildfires and associated flooding, mudslides and debris flows in Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. Those affected are encourages to apply online at https://eapply4ui.edd.ca.gov/, by calling 1-800-300-5616 (English) 1-800-326-8937 (Spanish) or by visiting a Local Recovery Center (see locations below).  

Local Recovery Centers (LRC) - Two Disaster Recovery Centers are now open locally for personal and business assistance. Representatives from FEMA, SBA, OES and other agencies will be present to provide information and resources for economic and personal injury due to the Thomas Fire and subsequent floods. Locations are as follows: 

SANTA BARBARA  

Calvary Chapel 

1 N Calle Cesar Chavez #21 

Santa Barbara, Ca 93103 

Monday-Friday 11-6:30  

Saturday 10-2 pm 

 

VENTURA 

Ventura County Credit Union 

6026 Telephone Rd 

Ventura, CA 93003 

Monday-Wednesday 9-4pm 

Thursday/Friday 9-5pm 

Saturday 9-1 pm 

 

RESOURCES FOR FARMERS AND RANCHERS- The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency has opened a temporary satellite office this week in Ventura County to help farmers and ranchers who suffered losses in the Thomas Fire apply for federal disaster recovery assistance. 

 

Agricultural Commissioner’s Office 

815 E. Santa Barbara St.  

Santa Paula, CA 93060 

 

Hours of operation 

Thursday, January 18, 8 a.m. to noon 

Thursday, January 25, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. 

Thursday, February 1, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. 

Thursday, February 8, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. 

Thursday, February 15, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. 

Thursday, February 22, 10 a.m. -2 p.m. 

 

Applicants are asked to call the Santa Barbara FSA office at 805-928-9269 to schedule an appointment, but drop-ins are also welcome.

The SBDC is funded by the SBA and provides professional business assistance at no cost to businesses. Participating businesses are required to follow a well-defined scope of work and report their economic successes. These SBA milestones are defined as job creation, increase in sales, capital investment, jobs retained and businesses started. 

EDC-VC is a private, nonprofit organization that serves as a business-to-government liaison to assist businesses in Ventura County by offering programs that enhance the economic vitality of the region. For more information about the Small Business Development Center, loan programs, manufacturing outreach and international trade program, or other services available to small businesses through EDC-VC, contact Bruce Stenslie at 805-384-1800 ext. 24 or bruce.stenslie@edc-vc.com. Or visit www.edc-vc.com.