Loans available for businesses affected by gas outage

Published 01-28-2019

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NEWPORT, R.I. (AP) - The state of Rhode Island is offering emergency loans of up to $25,000 for businesses that had to close because of a loss of natural gas service for a week.

Gov. Gina Raimondo announced the program Monday, saying "being without a week of revenue is very difficult."

The loan fund includes $1 million from the Rhode Island Commerce Corp., with another $200,000 committed by the Rhode Island Foundation and $250,000 by BankNewport. The loans have no payments and no interest for six months.

National Grid suspended service to about 6,400 customers in Newport and Middletown on Jan. 21 following a potentially dangerous loss of pressure caused by a supplier's faulty valve.

The utility says 95 percent of customers who lost service have had their service restored.

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