In his second trip to the Gulf Coast since the Deepwater Horizon oil spill began, Vice President Joe Biden traveled to Theodore, Ala., yesterday to assess efforts to counter the disaster.
During his visit, the Vice President [pictured above with Walt Dorn, of Patriot Environmental Services] toured the Theodore Staging Facility, met with response personnel, inspected boom, and participated in a roundtable discussion with fishermen and small-business owners from the area. He was joined by National Incident Commander Admiral Thad Allen and NOAA Administrator Dr. Jane Lubchenco.
Afterwards, the Vice President stressed the Administration’s commitment to restoring the Gulf Coast: "We’re not going to stop until this area -- all the entire Gulf -- has recovered; until the economy of the Gulf is revitalized and literally a way of life is restored," he said. "Because we’re not just talking about a natural ecosystem that’s in danger down here. We’re talking about an economic ecosystem.
"We’re also talking about a cultural ecosystem, a whole way of life. Whatever it takes to make this Gulf right, we’re going to make it right."
Approved SBA Economic Injury Assistance Loans Surpass $15 Million
To date, the U.S. Small Business Administration [SBA] has approved 181 economic injury assistance loans, totaling more than $15 million for Gulf Coast small businesses impacted by the Deepwater BP oil spill. Additionally, the agency has granted deferments on 707 existing SBA disaster loans in the region, totaling more than $3.7 million per month in payments.
For information on assistance loans for affected businesses, visit the SBA’s website at www.sba.gov/services/disasterassistance; call 800-659-2955 [800-877-8339 for the hearing impaired]; or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
For information about the response effort, visit http://www.restorethegulf.gov/.
For specific information about the federal-wide response, visit http://www.whitehouse.gov/deepwater-bp-oil-spill.
SOURCES: U.S. Small Business Administration, Unified Command for the Deepwater BP Oil Spill, The White House [photo by David Lienemann]
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