Open Space Forum

The Arlington County Department of Parks, Recreation and Community Resources will hold a community forum on the Open Space Master Plan, which will look at the county's future open-space needs.

The forum will be at 7 p.m. Dec. 4 at the Carver Community Center, 1415 S. Queen St. The program will include presentations by county officials, a discussion of goals and objections and working group reports.

For information, call Carlton Hart at 703-228-7577, e-mail openspace@co.arlington.va.us or see the Web site at www.co.arlington.va.us/forums/openspace.

Business Loans

Local small-business owners and some nonprofit institutions that suffered economic losses after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks might qualify for a special disaster loan offered by the U.S. Small Business Administration.

The Economic Injury Disaster Loan program provides eligible small businesses with the working capital needed to pay ordinary and necessary operating expenses they cannot cover because of the disaster. The interest rate is 4.0 percent with a maximum term of 30 years. In addition, payment of principal and interest has been deferred for the first two years of the loans.

The deadline for applying for the loans has been extended to Jan. 31. Rep. James P. Moran Jr. (D) requested the extension for area businesses to coincide with the deadline offered to businesses in the New York City area.

The Alexandria Small Business Development Center has been authorized by the SBA to assist business owners with the loan application and answer questions about the program. So far, 54 businesses in the Alexandria area have been approved for loans totaling more than $7 million. Contact the Alexandria SBDC at 703-778-1292, Ext. 206, for a loan application or additional information. Businesses may also contact the SBA Area 1 Disaster Office at 800-659-2955 for assistance or information.