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U.S. Senator Steve Daines and Congressman Greg Gianforte announced that the U.S Small Business Administration (SBA) will be modifying criteria for its Economic Injury and Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, which placed additional burdens on agricultural producers. This action follows Daines’ and Gianforte’s direct request to the SBA.

“I’m pleased the SBA listened to the concerns of Montana farmers and ranchers and modified the EIDL loan criteria to reflect the way agricultural businesses operate. I’ll continue fighting to make sure COVID-19 relief programs are providing help, not additional hardship,” Daines said.

“Montana ag producers shouldn’t have to jump through unnecessary hoops to get the resources available to them,” Gianforte said. “I’m thankful the SBA listened to our ag producers and are cutting red tape to this critical support.”

Certain Montana producers are experiencing difficulties with the lien requirements and compliance process for EIDL loans.

Daines and Gianforte sent a letter raising the issue and urged SBA to streamline the process for farmers and ranchers after they were contacted by Dan Weschenfelder, an EIDL recipient from Shepherd. Mr. Weschenfelder was asked to send physical checks to Texas, which resulted in substantial delays, for endorsement as a result of a lien placed on his livestock due to his loan through the EIDL program.

Dan had this to say about Daines’ and Gianforte’s efforts: “The Cattle business is tough enough without having to wade through layers of red tape every time I make a sale. I thoroughly appreciate Senator Daines’ and Congressman Gianforte’s work to elevate the concerns of ranchers with SBA and make sure disaster assistance programs are working for ag producers.”

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