Governor Newsom Requests U.S. Small Business Administration Disaster Declaration for Ridgecrest Earthquakes


SACRAMENTO – Governor Gavin Newsom today announced that the administration has formally requested that the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) declare a disaster for the damage caused by a series of large-magnitude earthquakes near Ridgecrest last month.

If approved, the SBA disaster assistance program will make low-interest loans available to eligible residents and businesses in San Bernardino and Kern counties.  

“The loss or damage of personal property following a natural disaster can have a significant financial impact on families and businesses,” said Governor Newsom. “The availability of these low-interest loans will provide needed relief to our residents as they continue to recover from the impacts of these earthquakes.” 

The administration’s letter to the SBA can be found here.  

The SBA disaster assistance program aids homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes and private nonprofit organizations to repair or replace real estate, personal property, machinery and equipment, inventory and business assets that were damaged or destroyed. The SBA tailors the repayment of each disaster loan to the borrower’s financial capability. 

Previously, Governor Newsom secured a Presidential Emergency Declaration for direct federal assistance, declared a state of emergency in Kern and San Bernardinocounties and toured the impacted area to meet with first responders, elected leaders and residents affected by the earthquakes.




  1. michele kirwin

    II am an earthquake victim in Ridgecrest California. We were promised help from the federal government but we have received nothing. I went to apply for a small business loan today for some help and I was told I did not make enough money . so what am I supposed to do ? there is no help here for any of us that make little money. President Trump promised us some federal help but fema came along and said that the city as a whole was not that affected by the earthquake and he decided not to give the help that was promised to us. I don’t believe this to be fair. they have not a clue what each household felt or has to deal with since this earthquake. there is no way possible for them to know the impact it had on everyone in this county . we were promised help and as an individual we should receive this help. maybe not everyone needs it but there are a lot of us who do and the government promised it to us. we are just as entitled as the people up north who had their fires. I am a US citizen and in all fairness I believe that I am just as entitled for help from my government as anyone else especially in a national disaster area. me ,as a person and my household were affected mobile home is splitting down the middle.. it is not stable anymore ..sinking on one end and broken pipes have left my floors completely soggy . everything has been pulled up to dry. air conditioner slid and broke water lines which seep through my roof into my walls and my electricity now shuts off and on whenever an appliance is plugged in. my hot water heater fell and left me with more broken lines. my house is not safe but nobody seems to care. how sad for our country. they pick and choose who needs help . they don’t have a clue who needs help. they say I’m supposed to be appreciative because the SBA was sent to our rescue …to help . excuse me. they only help those who already have money and don’t really need their help. they get that small interest loan . How nice and convenient for them .meanwhile people like me who really need help because we don’t have the money to help ourselves get the door slammed in our face telling us that we are too poor to receive aid. sure it’s like everything else in the great USA . the rich get richer and the poor get poorer . I paid taxes all my life ..for what? for this…I guess you don’t know where you’re at until disaster hits you at home where you live and the country that you love and believe in is not there for you but always rushing to help other countries aids but can’t help their own. I’m so so disappointed in this great country that I love so much.

    • Barb Parrish

      I applied for an SBA loan for earthquake damages to my home. With in 2 minutes of applying I was denied. Why? Because of my credit report. As I understood it. SBA was able to help those of us that were low income with bad credit anyway. Any other time I would understand it. But seriously? This was an emergency declaration. We got an SBA emergency declaration why? I guess we aren’t good enough or rich enough for FEMA. Even though we have the Navy base right next door. I agree with your comments. I managed to get a grant from desert valley bank. I’m praying it’s enough to at least fix my broken waterlines underneath my mobile home. But it’s definitely not enough to replace or repair the other damages done.

      • michele A kirwin

        Hi again..are you from Ridgecrest say you actually got a grant from someone. I have looked everywhere for help for my damage is done and I have found absolutely nothing. 211 is another suggestion I got from our government and all I got from them was a promise to pay my electric bill and then they didn’t pay it. it got shut off and it cost me an extra $100 just to get it turned back on . ended up costing me money instead of helping me. I’ve never seen nothing like this. I’ve been on the internet for weeks now trying to figure out why we got dogged in The help category. even Alaska damages were way minimal than ours and they were even bragging about how they have few impact because they redesign their buildings. well they got help. lots of it. and the people from Alaska are bitching because it wasn’t enough. they ought to step in our shoes . we got absolutely zero zip from our government. makes me believe it is all politics. any direction you could send me for help would be appreciated thank you so much

        • Barbara Parrish

          With as much damages as this area had, from Trona to Inyokern and the Base , I agree with you that it’s all political. We are a Navy base area. Pretty sad. Alot of the bigger churches in Ridgecrest offer help of one kind or another. Start there and work your way down the list. I’m having the same problems. The grant wasn’t enough to deal with all my damages but it helped. What’s left of my family here is moving out of state. I have plans to do the same thing. I wish you the best of luck. If you do need a detailed list let me know I can either email it or bring it to you if you live in the area. If anyone out there has suggestions please respond to this post. Thank you

          • michele A kirwin

            Thank you for responding. I’m going to try to get a letter directly to the governor. I just want an answer . why? why have so many people been overlooked and denied help when we all supposed to be equal in this country. and then I’m going to try to get a letter to the president because I know he wants to help. But what I’ve been reading they don’t help until the governor asked for it and he’s too busy asking help for the fire people up north. now he’s launched 50 million dollar campaign for preventive fire . makes me sad . what about us that have already suffered the disaster. we have nothing coming because not enough homes fell to the ground. that’s BS. Alaska got tons of help and they were devastated less than we were. so I just need some answers it’s not even so much about the money anymore although I desperately need it I just want to know why we have been overlooked ignored and had the door slammed in our face and so many promises were made. Have you tried writing any letters do the higher-ups I just want to know maybe if they will get through thank you again for responding

          • Barbara Parrish

            From what I’ve read our area had millions of dollars in damages, as far as Ridgecrest and Trona. That doesn’t even include the Base. I live out near Inyokern. Not once was Inyokern mentioned. We had damages from both quakes here I wonder why Inyokern wasn’t included in the disaster area. Inyokern is close enough to the base and Ridgecrest. So I completely agree with you. Very sad when we get hit with 2 major quakes 2 days in a row. Then another magnitude 5 recently that probably added to the damage already done. I really don’t understand WHY this entire area didn’t get the funding needed. The emergency funding didn’t help much. I don’t have much faith in the state or federal government. What are they waiting for? The Big One to hit?
            Now FEMA funding is being cut and what’s left will probably go to the hurricane Dorian victims that are going to take a direct hit.
            We need help to. So the governor sends in the SBA, which didn’t do alot people any good. Since our entire area has alot of low income residents and lousy credit. I don’t know if letters would get through. With as much faith as I have right now any letters would probably be ignored or shredded.
            You might try desert valleys federal credit union. They were having a quake relief grant program going. I don’t know if they still are. But checking with them sure wouldn’t help.
            Good luck. These days alot of people in this corner of Kern county and Trona need it.

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