Walz requests disaster declaration from Small Business Administration for civil unrest

A fire breaks out at a building amid protests in response to the death of George Floyd. (Tom Lyden / FOX 9)

Minnesota Governor Tim Walz is requesting a federal disaster declaration from the U.S. Small Business Administration in order to get financial support to help rebuild from the riots following George Floyd's death.

The disaster declaration would make low-interest loans available to property owners in Hennepin County impacted by the unrest. A damage survey found at least 25 homes and/or businesses in the county suffered uninsured losses of more than 40 percent their estimated fair market value. Based on these damages, officials believe Hennepin County meets the SBA's criteria for the declaration. 

In July, Federal Emergency Management Agency denied Walz's request for a major disaster declaration. According to the governor's office, Walz is in the process of appealing that decision.

During the unrest, nearly 1,500 businesses in the Twin Cities metro were damaged through vandalism, fire or looting. Damage estimates are greater than $500 million.