The federal government is accepting loan applications from small businesses, nonprofits and farm cooperatives affected by a drought this spring.

The U.S. Small Business Administration announced Friday that federal Economic Injury Disaster Loans are available to small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture and most private nonprofit organizations located in Maine as a result of the drought that began on May 1.

The loan program is available to applicants within Androscoggin, Cumberland, Oxford, Sagadahoc and York counties.

The SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program is available to eligible farm-related and nonfarm-related entities that suffered financial losses as a direct result of the disaster, according to a news release from the SBA. There are certain exceptions.

The loan amount can be up to $2 million with interest rates of 2.625 percent for private nonprofit organizations and 4 percent for small businesses, with terms up to 30 years. These working capital loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that could have been paid had the disaster not occurred. They are not intended to replace lost sales or profits.

Applications and information may be obtained by calling 800-659-2955, or at

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