Months after the domino cascade that led to the failures of the Edenville and Sanford dams in the Midland area, lingering questions on the economic repercussions of the disaster to the region remain.
“The true and full impact to businesses is still being generated; by our estimation, more than 60 businesses were affected, with some experiencing a total loss of their physical structures and equipment,” said Jenny Bruzewski, director of marketing and communications for the Midland Business Alliance.
“Small-business relief grants were provided to several of these dually impacted businesses during the COVID-19 outbreak,” she added. “All potential sources of recovery funds at the local, state and federal levels are being thoroughly evaluated alongside potential private sources.”
The Midland Area Community Foundation provided zero-interest small-business loans through its COVID-19 Impact Investing Fund. The loans were distributed in a joint effort with the MBA, said foundation President and CEO Sharon Mortensen.
“We are looking at ways to best assist our community — businesses, organizations and individuals — as we work to recover and rebuild from the flood,” Mortensen said.
The MBA has also been working closely with the Sanford Area Chamber of Commerce to discuss how it can best support the area. MBA President and CEO Tony Stamas said his organization is involved in every aspect, “from a crew of MBA staff getting their hands dirty and helping with the demolition of their badly flooded office to the MBA Ambassadors partnering with the United Way of Midland County to staff the Sanford Distribution Center.”