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3 Small Business Administration employees test positive for COVID-19 in Fort Worth

Organization officials said reduced staffing will not disrupt small businesses applying for emergency loans during the coronavirus pandemic.
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Three Small Business Administration staffers in the Fort Worth offices tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

Officials confirmed the three staff members have been sent home on leave. 

Despite the reduced staffing, SBA officials said they expect no disruption for North Texas small businesses applying for emergency loans or funds.

Last month, Gov. Greg Abbott announced that small businesses could apply for long-term, low-interest loans after many were forced to close during the coronavirus pandemic. 

Ken S. Malcolmson, president and CEO of the North Texas Chamber of Commerce said he hoped the reduced SBA staffing due to COVID-19  would not disrupt emergency loans to small businesses. 

“Any slow-down will be problematic,” Malcolmson said in a statement.

Small businesses battered by the novel coronavirus pandemic sweeping through Texas can apply for long-term, low-interest loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration, Gov. Greg Abbott announced Friday. The Economic Injury Disaster Loan is available for small businesses to apply. Questions of eligibility, and how to apply, can be answered on the agency website.

He said a typical small business owner has less than a month of cash reserves.

“So, every day that passes will cause more businesses to fail,” he said.

SBA spokeswoman Carol Wilkerson said the organization "took immediate action" after the employees tested positive, "including enhanced cleaning and sanitizing measures of the facility." 

The Small Business Administration has "immediate openings" for loan specialists and assistants, attorneys, paralegals and legal assistants "to help small businesses across the nation recover from the coronavirus." 

The temporary job openings would require "weekend work" and include mandatory overtime that could be "substantial." 

Job applicants can apply at usajobs.gov. 

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