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Disaster Housing Aid Reaches A Half A Million Dollars For Flood Victims

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Release date: 
May 24, 2001
Release Number: 

San Juan, PR -- The Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved more than $500,000 in aid to help residents affected by the May 6 to May 11 floods, according to disaster officials.

"Since the presidential declaration, $540,000 has been approved for disaster rental assistance and minimal repair grants," said Justo Hernández, federal coordinating officer for the recovery efforts. "Our top priority is to make sure that everyone is in safe, secure and habitable housing." The disaster housing program is designed to provide immediate assistance to those whose homes were made unlivable because of the floods that began on May 6th.

The number of applications made for disaster assistance through FEMA's toll-free registration line totaled 2,281 at the close of business, May 23.

Individuals and families whose homes were damaged or destroyed as a result of the floods may be eligible for disaster housing assistance. The only way to register for federal and commonwealth disaster assistance is to call 1-800-462-9029. The special line for hearing or-speech-impaired persons is TTY 1-800-462-7585. The registration line has Spanish and English speaking operators available from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week.

Administered by FEMA, the disaster housing program provides two types of assistance. Rental assistance is available to owners or tenants whose homes were destroyed or substantially damaged so they can have a place to live while repairs are being made.

Grants for limited home repairs are available to homeowners for emergency repairs to make a residence habitable until more extensive repairs can be made. Examples of emergency work could include essential repairs to electrical, plumbing and mechanical systems, as well as general carpentry.

These grants are not intended to restore a home to its pre-disaster condition and cannot be used for cosmetic repairs. To qualify for a limited home repair grant, the applicant must be an owner-occupant and the home must be the primary residence.

To date, approved disaster rental assistance and minimal repair grants in the nine designated municipalities are:

Approved Disaster Rental Assistance
MunicipalityApproved Disaster Housing
Cabo Rojo$44,680
Sabana Grande$6,851
San Germán$21,315

FEMA disaster assistance covers basic needs only and will not normally compensate individuals for their entire loss. Low-interest loans from SBA may be available to homeowners, renters and businesses of all sizes to cover real estate and personal property damage that is not fully compensated by insurance or other sources.

Last Updated: 
February 6, 2013 - 16:39
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