SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Small, nonfarm businesses in 17 Nevada counties - including Humboldt, Pershing and Lander - and neighboring counties of Arizona, California, Idaho and Oregon are eligible to apply for low-interest federal disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

"These loans offset economic losses because of reduced revenues caused by the drought that began Sept. 1 in the following primary counties," announced Tanya Garfield, acting director of SBA's Disaster Field Operations Center-West.

- Primary Nevada counties: Churchill, Clark, Humboldt, Lander, Lyon, Mineral, Nye, Pershing and Washoe;

- Neighboring Nevada counties: Carson City, Douglas, Elko, Esmeralda, Eureka, Lincoln, Storey and White Pine;

- Neighboring Arizona county: Mohave;

- Neighboring California counties: Inyo, Lassen, Modoc, Mono, Nevada, Placer, San Bernardino and Sierra;

- Neighboring Idaho county: Owyhee;

- Neighboring Oregon counties: Harney, Lake and Malheur.

"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 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 4% for businesses and 2.875% 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.

Agricultural enterprises should contact the Farm Services Agency about the U.S. Department of Agriculture assistance.

Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application via SBA's secure Web site at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Information and application forms are also available from SBA's Customer Service Center by calling (800) 659-2955 or e-mailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.

Individuals who are deaf or hard-of-hearing may call (800) 877-8339. For information, visit http://www.sba.gov/disaster.

The deadline to apply is Sept. 15.