FEMA Updates Disaster Assistance Information

There are three weeks left to register and apply for federal disaster assistance. Aug. 1 is the deadline to register for assistance from FEMA and SBA. After applying survivors will receive a letter from FEMA explaining the status of their application and how to respond. It is important to read the letter carefully. If survivors have questions about the letter they may call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362; go online to www.DisasterAssistance.gov; or visit a disaster recovery center. Survivors should register for assistance regardless of whether they live in a community that participates in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP). Rebuilding Advice Offered at Several Locations FEMA mitigation specialists have been at hardware and home improvement stores to provide free information, answer questions and offer tips on how to repair and rebuild flood-damaged homes stronger and safer. However, assistance locations in Douglas and Ozark counties have now expired. Federal Emergency Management Agency mitigation specialists will be on hand in Howell County during the next week to answer questions. FEMA advisors will be at Westlake Ace hardware, 1401 Mitchell Road, West Plains on the following days and times: July 12-15, 7:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.; July 17, 7:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.; July 18, 7:30 a.m. – noon. Advisors will also be in Butler, Newton and St. Louis counties during the next week. FEMA reported this week that as of July 9, a total of 1,617 households had been approved for assistance. The total number of Individuals and Household Program grants approved exceeded $10.3 million. FEMA had approved Housing Assistance grants of more than $8.6 million; and Other Needs Assistance, more than $1.7 million. As of July 6, the U.S. Small Business Administration had approved more than $9.3 million in low-interest disaster loans. Scott Sanders, media relations manager for the Federal Emergency Management Agency said 1,307 claims had been filed with the National Flood Insurance Program as of July 7 with 970 claims closed with payment and total payments to date of $48.9 million.