SBA offering loans to disaster victims


By Sam Wildow - Miami Valley Today



MIAMI COUNTY — A representative from the Small Business Administration (SBA) spoke to the Board of Miami County Commissioners during their meeting on Thursday about how homeowners, renters, business owners, and other people affected by the May 27 tornadoes can apply for a low-interest loan to help offset costs not covered by insurance.

Julie Garrett, a public affairs specialist with SBA’s Office of Disaster and Assistance, said affected people can get loans with rates as low as 1.938 percent to go toward personal property, residential homes, businesses, and more to help cover expenses not covered by insurance. Garrett said the SBA could also help direct applicants toward other grants available through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

Applicants can get up to a $40,000 loan for personal property, up to a $200,000 loan for residential homes, and up to $2 million for businesses, with the exception being for farmers, Garrett said. The deadline to apply is Aug. 19, and representatives from the SBA will be available at a temporary Disaster Recovery Center this weekend for those with questions.

Garrett also noted that there is a five-month grace period with the loans and that applying for them does not affect the applicants’ credit scores. There is no application fee, and the terms of the loans can be up to 30 years.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the SBA, and local agencies from Miami County will open a temporary Disaster Recovery Center beginning on Friday to assist individuals and businesses impacted by the storm.

If you have damage from the May 27-29 disaster not covered by insurance, you should begin the process by applying for federal assistance online at DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling (800) 621-3362 (including 711 or Video Relay); TTY (800) 462-7585.

In Miami County, the Disaster Resource Center will be located at Milton-Union High School, 7640 Milton-Potsdam Road, West Milton. The dates and times of the Disaster Resource Center will be:

• Friday, June 28 — 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

• Saturday, June 29 — 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

• Sunday June 30 — 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

• Monday, July 1 — 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Visitors should park on the south side of the building and go into the double doors marked M25. Agencies will be in the cafeteria.

In other news:

Miami County Judge Scott Altenburger of the Miami County Juvenile and Probate Courts went over his Juvenile Court 2018 Annual Report with the commissioners, discussing the impact of their diversion program and other statistics from Juvenile Court.

“Our diversion program has been highly successful,” Altenburger said.

He explained that the program allows certains juveniles facing charged to bypass the complaint and go straight to probation. Once they complete certain things with probation, then the prosecutor’s office will withdraw the criminal charge.

“It’s quite a good incentive for the youth,” Altenburger said. He said that of juveniles who go through the diversion program, approximately 80 percent of them do not re-offend.

Juvenile Court will be opening the diversion program to more juveniles facing misdemeanor charges, including drug-related charges.

Altenburger said that between 2017 and 2018, criminal charges in Juvenile Court dropped from 726 to 517.

“That’s a 28 percent decrease,” Altenburger said. “That’s what we want to see. We want to see those numbers go down.”

While criminal charges for juveniles are decreasing, Altenburger discussed the increased number of cases they are seeing in regard to abuse, neglect, and dependency cases.

“This is where we’re getting hit pretty hard,” Altenburger said.

There were approximately 92 cases in 2017 and 124 in 2018. The county is also on track to exceed the number of those cases this year.

“We had 30 filed in one month,” Altenburger said.

Commissioner Jack Evans noted that trend seemed to begin in 2014, and he asked if there was a reason behind the increased number of cases. Altenburger suggested it was possibly due to the opioid epidemic.

“These kids have been neglected,” Altenburger said.

He noted that they only had 14 permanent custody cases in 2018 where they had to remove a child from the home and have them placed in the custody of someone else.

“Children will do better with their natural parents,” he said.

In other business, the commissioners also awarded the 2019 Asphalt Concrete Resurfacing Program contract to John R. Jurgensen Company of Springfield during their meeting. The cost is not to exceed $1,818,706.

The commissioners also authorized the purchases from Kronos for the Human Resources Department. Kronos is a software company providing human capital management and workforce management services. During a meeting in May, two representatives from Kronos went over digital and online time cards, touch screen time clocks, and other software advantages to avoid fraudulent time card or mileage reimbursement claims with the commissioners.

On Thursday, the commissioners authorized the Kronos Timekeeping System and a Kronos Everything Benefits Solution. The Kronos Timekeeping System will cost approximately $4,042 a month with a one-time set-up fee of $21,300. The Kronos Everything Benefits Solution will cost $1.50 per employee per month, which was estimated at costing approximately $12,000 annually.

The commissioners also authorized a lease agreement for the Auto Title Office Space at the One Stop Shop as requested by the Miami County Clerk of Courts. The lease agreement will be a renewal for the Auto Title Office at the One Stop Shop, located at 1275 Experiment Farm Road in Troy, at a cost not to exceed approximately $31,769.

By Sam Wildow

Miami Valley Today

Reach Sam Wildow at swildow@aimmediamidwest.com. © 2019 Miami Valley Today, all rights reserved.

Reach Sam Wildow at swildow@aimmediamidwest.com. © 2019 Miami Valley Today, all rights reserved.