Missouri businesses directly harmed by the summer heat and drought can get low-interest loans through the U.S. Small Business Administration.
Small nonfarm businesses, agricultural cooperatives and nonprofit organizations are eligible for up to $2 million for expenses caused by the drought. The deadline for loans is March and applications can be submitted online at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/.
A city of Columbia's effort to classify certain neighborhoods as blighted to help businesses secure tax credits continues to draw fire from local activists.
The "blight" label is required by the state Department of Economic Development to create Enhanced Enterprise Zones. The zones are distinct areas where businesses can receive tax breaks in return for adding new facilities or jobs.
Opponents say the label will lower property values and could make it easier for local government to seize property under eminent domain laws.