Give the Gift of Emergency Preparedness this Holiday Season

Give the Gift of Emergency Preparedness this Holiday Season

WAYNE COUNTY, OH, Dec. 2019 — With the winter holidays just weeks away, Ohio residents may want to consider giving gifts that will help family members and friends sustain themselves during the event of a disaster or home emergency. Items to build an emergency preparedness kit can make unique and useful holiday gifts.

“If you’re still looking for a good gift for that hard-to-buy-for loved one, consider giving the gift of preparedness,” said Ohio Emergency Management Agency Executive Director Sima Merick. “This may jumpstart them on the road toward preparedness and could make a huge difference in a disaster or emergency – maybe even save a life.”

Ideas for emergency preparedness gift items include:

– Battery-Powered or Hand-Crank NOAA Weather Radio with Tone Alert

– Battery-Operated or Hand-Crank Flashlight or Lantern with Extra Batteries

– Walkie-Talkies, Extra Batteries

– Solar-Powered Cell Phone Charger

– Combination Smoke Alarm and Carbon Monoxide Detector

– Fire Extinguisher

– Activity Books, Playing Cards and Board Games for Kids (in case the power goes out)

– Water Bottle with Built-In Filter (personal water filter)

– Multipurpose Tool or Swiss Army Knife

– Personal Hygiene Comfort Kit: shampoo, body wash, washcloth, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, etc.

Holiday shoppers may also want to consider giving a winter car kit equipped with a snow brush, ice scraper, emergency flares, jumper cables, shovel, a blanket, and a travel-size first aid kit. For animal lovers: a pet disaster kit with a food and water dish, pet food, bottled water, and a leash or pet carrier.

Over the next couple of weeks, the Ohio Emergency Management Agency will highlight these emergency preparedness gift ideas on Facebook and Twitter.

For additional information on emergency preparedness and winter weather safety, visit ReadyOhio at


Posted by Dan Starcher, public communications specialist for the Wayne County government.

SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans Available in 53 Ohio Counties

SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans Available in 53 Ohio Counties

WAYNE COUNTY, OH, Sep. 2019 — The U.S. Small Business Administration announced recently that Economic Injury Disaster Loans are available to small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives, small businesses engaged in aquaculture, and private nonprofit organizations located in Ohio as a result of excessive rain and flooding from Jan. 1 through Aug.13, 2019.The loans are available in the following counties: Adams, Allen, Ashland, Athens, Auglaize, Champaign, Coshocton, Crawford, Darke, Defiance, Delaware, Fairfield, Franklin, Gallia, Hancock, Hardin, Henry, Highland, Hocking, Holmes, Huron, Jackson, Knox, Lawrence, Licking, Logan, Madison, Marion, Medina, Meigs, Mercer, Monroe, Morgan, Morrow, Noble, Paulding, Perry, Pickaway, Pike, Putnam, Richland, Ross, Scioto, Shelby, Stark, Summit, Tuscarawas, Union, Van Wert, Vinton, Washington, Wayne and Wood in Ohio.

“When the Secretary of Agriculture issues a disaster declaration to help farmers recover from damages and losses to crops, the Small Business Administration issues a declaration to eligible entities, affected by the same disaster,” said Kem Fleming, director of SBA’s Field Operations Center East.

Under this declaration, the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program is available to eligible farm-related and nonfarm-related entities that suffered financial losses as a direct result of this disaster. With the exception of aquaculture enterprises, SBA cannot provide disaster loans to agricultural producers, farmers and ranchers. The loan amount can be up to $2 million with interest rates of 3.74 percent for small businesses and 2.75 percent for private non-profit organizations of all sizes, with terms up to 30 years.

The SBA determines eligibility based on the size of the applicant, type of activity, and its financial resources. Loan amounts and terms are set by the SBA and are based on each applicant’s financial condition. These working capital loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that could have been paid had the disaster not occurred. The loans are not intended to replace lost sales or profits.

Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website at loan information and application forms may also be obtained by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or by sending an email to Loan applications can be downloaded from Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155. Submit completed loan applications to SBA no later than May 6, 2020.

Posted by Dan Starcher, public communications specialist for the Wayne County government.