Chicago, IL -- The deadline for southern Ohioans who suffered flood damage between February 18 and March 2 to apply for federal and state disaster assistance has been extended from Saturday, May 6, to Monday, May 8.
Officials from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Ohio Emergency Management Agency (Ohio EMA) today announced that victims who experienced damage from storms in the seven declared counties of Adams, Gallia, Jackson, Lawrence, Meigs, Pike and Scioto need to register for assistance now.
"The telephone registration system is simple, but an essential step for anyone who seeks disaster assistance from state or federal programs. The deadline for registration has been extended two days to give applicants every opportunity," said Ohio EMA Acting Executive Director Nancy Dragani.
The application deadline is set at 60 days after the Presidential declaration of March 7. Residents of Adams, Gallia, Jackson, Lawrence, Meigs, Pike and Scioto counties, who have suffered damage or losses between February 18 and March 2, may register for disaster assistance programs by calling 1-800-462-9029 (TTY 1 800 462-7585) from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday and 1:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday. Those who have already applied may check on the status of their application or update information by calling the toll-free FEMA helpline, 1 800 525-0321 (TTY 1 800 462-7585), from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Saturday. As of Monday, May 1, both the Tele-registration line and the Helpline hours will be Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. (EDT).
FEMA has issued more than $1.1 million in temporary disaster housing assistance grants to 671 eligible Ohio flood victims. To date, 1,084 people have called FEMA to register for disaster assistance. The State of Ohio's Individual and Family Grant (IFG) Program has approved $352,194 in grants for disaster-related necessary expenses and serious needs not covered by other assistance programs.
May 8 is also the deadline for disaster victims to return the U.S. Small business Administration (SBA) loan packet. Even if residents are not interested in accepting a loan or think they cannot afford a loan for damages to their homes or personal property, completing the forms is required to be considered for IFG assistance. As of April 25, 69 SBA disaster assistance loans totaling $1,080,800 have been approved.
"While people are in the recovery period following a disaster, they many times think they have adequate resources available to repair their home to a livable status. By the time they decide their resources are inadequate to cover the expenses, many times it's too late to apply for assistance. Please do not let this happen to you. Register today for disaster assistance if you live in one of the seven declared counties and experienced damage from the storms. You do not have to accept the assistance if it is offered, but you may be glad that you registered," said FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer Brad Gair.
"Once the May 8 deadline passes, it is too late to register to receive assistance. It is better to register for assistance and not need it, than to discover too late that they should have registered and did not," added Gair.
Through April 25, 1,084 Ohioans people have called to register for assistance. The following chart gives a breakdown by county of the number of people who have called FEMA's toll-free line and registered for disaster assistance, the approved number of temporary housing grants, and the total approved dollars in temporary disaster housing grants:
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