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The Associated Press June 22, 2011, 1:20PM ET

Ohio businesses near polluted lake can get loans

Federal loans will be available to small businesses in eight western Ohio counties hurt economically because toxic algae in the state's largest inland lake has decreased tourism.

Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown says low-interest disaster loans from the Small Business Administration are available for businesses affected by algae outbreaks in Grand Lake St. Marys, between Dayton and Toledo. Marinas and other businesses that rely on visitors were hurt when the state told people not to swim, boat or fish at the lake during an algae outbreak last year.

The offer applies to businesses, small agricultural cooperatives and non-profits in Auglaize, Mercer, Allen, Darke, Hardin, Logan, Shelby and Van Wert Counties. They must apply before July 19.

Brown says the loans will help small businesses "get back on their feet."

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