Toledo, OH -- Flood victims have two more days to visit the Disaster Recovery Center located in North Towne Square (near Pearle Vision) which will close at 3 p.m. on Saturday, (September 9th), according to state and federal disaster officials.
The other center in the Federal Building (first floor), 234 N. Summit St. downtown will continue to remain open, but reduce the Saturday hours to 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. It will be closed on Sunday and reopen from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday next week.
More than 200 individuals and families have visited the temporary recovery centers over the past week to talk face-to-face with federal, state and local volunteer agency recovery specialists about the variety of disaster assistance programs that are available to storm and flood victims in Lucas County.
"We have started to see a significant reduction in the number of application calls and visits to the centers," said Federal Coordinating Officer Lou Botta, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). "This is usually an indicator that victims are receiving the assistance and information that they need."
More than 2,300 residents have called to apply and more than half of those claims (1,336) have been approved for disaster housing grants totaling nearly $2.4 million. These grants are designed to provide temporary rental assistance or minimal repairs to make an applicant's home habitable. This may be just the first type of disaster assistance that individuals or families may be eligible to receive.
"If you still have disaster assistance questions, we hope that you will take advantage of the free services available at the recovery centers and visit before they close," said State Coordinating Officer Dale Shipley, Ohio Emergency management Agency (Ohio EMA).
After calling to apply, disaster victims may visit one of the centers if they have questions about the application process or just wish to meet face-to-face with recovery specialists. Representatives of local, state and federal agencies, as well as volunteer agencies are on hand to provide program and service information. There are also SBA representatives available to help residents complete a low-interest loan application, and FEMA and Ohio EMA specialists are available to discuss common-sense measures to reduce future disaster losses.
Anyone in Lucas County who suffered damage or loss from the storms and flooding which occurred July 29 through August 2 should apply for assistance by calling toll-free, 800-462-9029. People with hearing or speech impairments may call TTY 800-462-7585. This one toll-free phone call is the only way to apply for disaster assistance. Both lines are operational from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. seven days a week and multi-lingual operators are available to take your call.
Flood victims may still contact local voluntary agencies by calling 246-4636 if they have unmet needs. Volunteers are still available to assist with such disaster-related needs as cleaning and debris removal, home repairs, furniture and clothing needs, counseling, furnace or hot heater minor repairs, and emergency food requests. They can also provide transportation for seniors or those with special needs to the Disaster Recovery Centers.