Walker Seeks Tornado Disaster Aid From US Small Business Administration

SBA Declaration Would Offer Low Interest Loans For Rebuilding Homes And Businesses

Tornado damage at the Prairie Lake Estates Mobile Home Park near Chetek
Rich Kremer/WPR

Gov. Scott Walker is asking the U.S. Small Business Administration to designate Barron and Rusk counties disaster areas in order to open access to low-interest federal loans to homeowners and businesses.

Officials in Barron and Rusk counties estimate a May 16 tornado caused more than $20 million in damages. Hundreds of homes, rental properties and businesses were affected by the storm.

At the Prairie Lakes Estates mobile home park near the city of Chetek, 40 trailers were destroyed, some of which were uninsured.

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A statement from Walker’s office said a disaster declaration from the SBA would offer low-interest loans to those with damage. Walker said this would be another source of aid for victims.

The May tornado left an 83-mile trail of destruction.

If the SBA declares Barron and Rusk counties disaster areas, neighboring counties would also qualify for the loan program.