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WASHINGTON — Steven Preston, administrator of the Small Business Administration, sought to reassure employees after a second article in recent weeks from the New York Times criticizing the agency’s disaster loan assistance program.

This time, the publication mentioned a supposed probe from federal investigators into accusations that in speeding up its work, SBA made thousands of loans “without following its own rules to avoid fraud.” According to the Feb. 27 article, current and former employees of the agency told investigators that agency workers failed to secure proper proof that borrowers owned the houses they were supposed to rebuild or had the required insurance.

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