OMAHA, Neb. -- The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and Nebraska Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) Disaster Recovery Center, which opened in Florence Aug. 30, to serve disaster survivors of Burt, Douglas and Washington counties, will close its operation on Tuesday, Sept. 14, at 6 p.m.
"The center provided a valuable service to residents during its two busy weeks of operation," said Charles Biggs, FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer. "It hosted more than 350 visitors who were provided face-to-face opportunities to talk with recovery specialists about a variety of governmental and voluntary programs designed to help them begin rebuilding their lives and properties and to learn ways to prevent future damages.
Represented in the center, in addition to FEMA, the U.S. Small Business Administration and the Internal Revenue Service, are the following state agencies: Department of Health and Human Services, Department of Revenue, Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Labor.
How will the closure of the Disaster Recovery Center affect residents who suffered storm damage and have not yet registered for assistance from the state and federal government?
"The state, federal, local and voluntary agencies will continue working in partnership to help residents who have unmet needs," stated State Coordinating Officer Fran Laden.
"Teleregistration lines will continue to operate through Oct. 18, which is the registration deadline," Laden said. "The number to call is 1-800-462-9029; for those who are hearing or speech impaired the number to call is (TTY) 1-800-462-7585."
Laden added, "For those who have registered for assistance and either want to update their application, or seek additional help, they may call the Helpline at 1-800-525-0321 or (TTY) 1-800-462-7585."
Nearly 3,000 registrations have been made so far from residents who suffered damages from the Aug. 6-9 severe storms and flooding. More than 1,200 temporary housing checks worth more than $1.2 million have been provided to residents. Over $100,000 in Individual and Family Grant checks have been mailed while nearly $300,000 in loans have been approved by the U.S. Small Business Administration.
Disaster assistance programs include: housing assistance, which provides funds to those whose homes are uninhabitable, or to homeowners to cover essential emergency repairs to make homes habitable; grants for serious needs and necessary expenses not covered by insurance or other programs; low-interest loans for flood-damaged residential homes and businesses; disaster unemployment assistance; tax assistance; and other special services.