"It's frustrating when you think your insurance is supposed to take care of you," he told the committee.
Minturn told senators he probably would not apply for one of the loans, if the legislation becomes law. Miller, however, said he's likely to apply for a recovery loan.
"I think a low-interest loan would be a great way to help folks out," he said.
On Wednesday, the Economic Development Committee fleshed out a bill (HB4175). that, as it left the House, provided a vague call for the governor's office to come up with emergency financial assistance for small businesses affected by the water crisis, and to come up with a funding source.
Delegate Doug Skaff, D-Kanawha, lead sponsor of the bill, said Wednesday it was intentionally vague in order to get a bill introduced within a week of the chemical leak that would open negotiations with the governor's office to come up with a more substantive relief plan.
As amended, the bill would require the director of Homeland Security to submit emergency rules for specifics on how the loan program will operate.
Owners of affected businesses could apply for loans of up to $15,000 -- increased Wednesday from $5,000 after committee members heard the restaurateurs' testimony.
"I think that's a number that gives some relief," Sen. Art Kirkendoll, D-Logan, said in offering the amendment to increase the maximum loan amount.
The loans, which would be for up to 24 months at an interest rate equal to half the federal prime rate, would be funded from $2 million set aside from the governor's civil contingency fund.
"We're trying to do what's right, based on the money we have," committee Chairman Bob Williams, D-Taylor, said of the revamped bill. It goes to Senate Finance for further consideration.
Reach Phil Kabler at ph...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1220.