WASHINGTON, Feb. 11, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Connecticut residents and businesses affected by the fire in the City of East Hartford on Jan. 15 can apply for low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration, SBA Administrator Karen G. Mills announced today. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20110909/DC65875LOGO) Administrator Mills made the loans available in response to a letter from Gov. Dannel P. Malloy on Feb. 5, requesting a disaster declaration by the SBA. The declaration covers Hartford County and the adjacent counties of Litchfield, Middlesex, New Haven, New London and Tolland in Connecticut; and Hampden in Massachusetts. "The SBA is strongly committed to providing the people of Connecticut with the most effective and customer-focused response possible to assist homeowners, renters, and businesses of all sizes with federal disaster loans," said Administrator Mills. "Getting businesses and communities up and running after a disaster is our highest priority at SBA." "Loans up to $200,000 are available to homeowners to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate. Homeowners and renters are eligible for loans up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged or destroyed personal property," said Frank Skaggs, director of SBA's Field Operations Center East in Atlanta. "SBA's customer service representatives are on hand at the Disaster Loan Outreach Center to issue applications, and assist survivors with completing their applications," Skaggs added. "Businesses and non-profit organizations of any size may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory, and other business assets," said Bernard M. Sweeney, SBA's Connecticut district director. The SBA may increase a loan up to 20 percent of the total amount of disaster damage to real estate and/or leasehold improvements, as verified by SBA, to make improvements that lessen the risk of property damage by future disasters of the same kind.