TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Gov. Ron DeSantis and First Lady Casey DeSantis were joined by several state officials Monday while discussing the state’s latest hurricane recovery efforts at a disaster recovery center in Port Charlotte.

The governor announced that he will award an initial $2.5 million to businesses through the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program to recover from hurricane damages.

The program provides short-term, zero-interest loans to small businesses that experienced financial physical impacts due to Hurricane Ian.

Businesses in impacted counties that are receiving awards include but are not limited to:

  • 6 Businesses in Hillsborough County receiving loans totaling $300,000
  • 3 Businesses in Sarasota County receiving loans totaling $150,000
  • 2 Businesses in Manatee County receiving loans totaling $100,000
  • 1 Business in Highlands County receiving a loan totaling $50,000

According to a release from the governor’s office, “the Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program is intended to bridge the gap between the time a disaster impacts a business and when a business can secure long-term recovery funding.”