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September 27, 2011
News Release
WESTFIELD, Mass. -- Applicants for federal disaster assistance who receive a letter informing them they are not eligible for reimbursement for damages caused by Tropical Storm Irene during the period August 27-29 may still be able to get help from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
September 23, 2011
News Release
WESTFIELD, Mass. -- Residents in flooded areas of Berkshire and Franklin counties should have their septic systems and wells checked for safety, federal and state disaster recovery officials advise. Floodwaters can cause septic tanks to fill and overflow, resulting in possible health risks and environmental problems. Private water wells can become contaminated by bacteria and pollutants carried in flood waters.
September 23, 2011
News Release
WESTFIELD, Mass. -- Homeowners in Berkshire and Franklin counties may be eligible for disaster aid to help repair flood-damaged wells and septic systems, state and federal officials said. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) grants can help pay to pump septic tanks, perform required repairs or replace the system as needed. Damaged private wells that are the sole source of water for the home also may be repaired or decontaminated.
September 22, 2011
News Release
Westfield, Mass. -- Two Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) ? at Green River Elementary School, 62 Meridian Street in Greenfield and the Pittsfield Public Library, 1 Wendell Avenue in Pittsfield ? will close permanently on Saturday, October 1, disaster officials announced today. On this final day of operations, these two DRCs will open at 9 a.m. and close at 2 p.m.
September 21, 2011
News Release
WESTFIELD, Mass. -- Receiving Social Security benefits and other forms of government aid should not prevent residents in Berkshire and Franklin counties from applying for or receiving disaster assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). "A federal grant will not add to taxable income, as long as the grant is given as assistance to recover from a disaster," said Federal Coordinating Officer James N. Russo. "This means that receiving disaster aid will not affect Social Security benefits."
September 21, 2011
News Release
Westfield, Mass. -- The Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) at the Housatonic Community Center, 1064 Main Street in Great Barrington, will close permanently at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, September 27, disaster officials announced today. "The number of registrations from the Great Barrington area has declined, and we feel that the majority of those needing assistance have taken advantage of this center's services," said Federal Coordinating Officer James N. Russo. "FEMA and the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) keep DRCs open for as long as needed in each location."
September 20, 2011
News Release
WESTFIELD, Mass. -- When individuals apply for federal and state disaster assistance, there may be an expectation that disaster recovery programs will provide all the funds needed to recover from the damages caused by Tropical Storm Irene from August 27 -- 29. Understanding the steps of the federal/state recovery process can help people reduce the confusion brought on by a disaster, sort out the information available and make the decisions required to begin rebuilding their lives.
September 20, 2011
News Release
WESTFIELD, Mass. -- U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) low-interest disaster loans are not limited to just business owners. They are also a main source of aid for individuals and families with damage and losses from Tropical Storm Irene. Disaster loans are available to qualified homeowners to cover the cost to repair or replace real estate loss, while renters and homeowners may both be eligible for loans to address personal property losses.
September 16, 2011
News Release
WESTFIELD, Mass. -- Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) are now open in five locations in Berkshire and Franklin counties to help those whose homes or businesses were affected by Tropical Storm Irene. The centers are open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Saturday, until further notice.
September 16, 2011
News Release
WESTFIELD, Mass. -- Fears that there will not be enough money to assist everyone in Berkshire and Franklin counties affected by Tropical Storm Irene during the August 27-29 period are misleading, according to officials with the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

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