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  • Florida SBDC Network urges preparation ahead of Hurricane Elsa

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    July 02, 2021
    Small businesses encouraged to make preparations.
     
     
    Media Contact
    Dianne Gross
    Florida SBDC Network Headquarters
    (850) 898-3486
    Dianne.Gross@FloridaSBDC.org
     
    News Release
    July 2, 2021
    For Immediate Release
     
     
    Florida SBDC Network urges preparation ahead of Hurricane Elsa
     
     
    Florida SBDC Network Headquarters (Pensacola, Fla.) – The Florida SBDC Network, the state’s principal provider of small business assistance, urges small businesses to prepare for Hurricane Elsa, the first hurricane of the 2021 season.
     
    According to the National Hurricane Center, Hurricane Elsa has maximum sustained winds of 85 mph and is tracking west-northwest through the Windward Islands at 29 mph. The storm could impact Florida early next week and businesses are urged to make preparations.
     
    “We are working alongside state officials to closely monitor Hurricane Elsa,” said Greg Britton, CEO of the Florida SBDC Network. “While there is still uncertainty regarding the storm’s potential path and impact, businesses should take the time now to prepare. Elsa and this year’s hurricane season bring renewed challenges to our businesses and communities after the impacts of COVID-19, so it’s important now more than ever to prepare.”
     
    Preparedness tips: 
     
    • Businesses should pay close attention to the storm’s forecast over the holiday weekend. The National Hurricane Center issues regular public advisories at Hurricanes.gov. 
    • During this time, it’s important for businesses to review their disaster and emergency communication plans.
    • Businesses should backup all data on servers and personal computers and ensure remote access is available.
    • Businesses should ensure equipment is raised above potential flood levels.
    • Businesses should take time to review their insurance policies to mitigate any possible gaps in coverage.
    • We also encourage businesses to protect and duplicate important business documents and records. Be sure they are accessible from anywhere.
     
    As a principal responder in the state’s Emergency Support Function (ESF) 18 for Business & Industry, the Florida SBDC Network helps small businesses prepare for and recover from disasters.
     
    Through the network’s service offering, professionally certified business consultants can help small business owners develop business continuity, emergency preparedness, and disaster recovery plans at no cost. The network also has preparedness plan templates and resources available on its website.
     
    As part of its service offering, the Florida SBDC offers Bizaster, a free mobile disaster assistance app. Bizaster, available in both English and Spanish for Android and iOS, features risk assessments, customizable checklists, and other resources.
     
    Depending on the storm’s severity and impact, the Florida SBDC Network’s team of disaster specialists will be available to help affected businesses prepare disaster loan applications. 
     
    Florida SBDCs also offer online and in-person educational training on disaster preparedness, tips, and resources.
     
    Preparedness resources:
     
    • For more information regarding the Florida SBDC’s preparedness and recovery services and Bizaster app, please click here.
    • For a list of preparedness resources, including tips for assembling a Business Ready “Records-To-Go” Box,  please click here.
    • www.FloridaDisaster.org – The state’s official source of information for individuals and businesses from the Florida Division of Emergency Management.
    • www.FloridaDisaster.biz - The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity’s website to provide businesses access to critical information before, during, and after a disaster. 
    • For a hurricane preparedness checklist and other resources from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), please click here.
     
    For more information, please visit www.FloridaSBDC.org
     
     
     
     
     
     
    About the Florida SBDC Network:
    Celebrating its 45th anniversary this year, the Florida SBDC Network, the state’s principal provider of business assistance [Fl. Stat. 288.001], has nourished a statewide partnership between higher education and economic development to provide existing and emerging small and medium-sized business owners with management and knowledge resources that enable overall growth, increased profitability, and economic prosperity for Florida’s economy. In 2019, Florida SBDCs provided 114,064 hours of professional business consulting to 12,535 client businesses, resulting in 37,966 jobs impacted; $4.4 billion in sales generated; $496.5 million in government contracts acquired; and $255.3 million in capital accessed; and 453 new businesses started. With over 40 offices statewide, the Florida SBDC is funded in part by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Defense Logistics Agency, State of Florida and other private and public partners. The Florida SBDC Network, headquartered at the University of West Florida, is nationally accredited by the Association of SBDCs and is a recipient of the President’s E Award for Export Service. Florida SBDC services are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis. Language assistance services are available for individuals with limited English proficiency. For more information, please visit www.FloridaSBDC.org.
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
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    State Designated as Florida's Principal Provider of Business Assistance [§ 288.001, Fla. Stat.]
    A statewide partnership program nationally accredited by the Association of America’s SBDCs and funded in part by the U.S. Small Business Administration, Defense Logistics Agency, State of Florida, and other private and public partners, with the University of West Florida serving as the network’s headquarters. Florida SBDC services are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis. Language assistance services are available for individuals with limited English proficiency.