“Investigation: Disaster Loans Foster Disparities In Black Communities”

“One of the costliest storms in the past decade struck indiscriminately along the southeast coast of the United States in 2016.

The government's response showed more bias.

The federal agency that distributed $492 million in disaster loans after Hurricane Matthew based its approvals on a method known to harm some racial groups.

The outcome was stark in two communities.

In a flooded urban area of Jacksonville, Fla., the Small Business Administration approved only 26% of the applications for low-interest disaster loans to rebuild a home or business. Altogether, those loans provided just $60,400.

In the coastal resort community of Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., the SBA approved 84% of the loan applications. Total value: $2.7 million.

Ponte Vedra Beach is 94% white.

The Jacksonville area is 96% Black.”

Thomas Frank reports for E&E News June 30, 2020.