Oklahoma City, OK -- Residents and business owners in Caddo, Kiowa and Washita Counties who sustained damage from the severe storms and tornadoes on October 9 and 10, 2001, have only until December 31, 2001 to apply for disaster assistance. That is also the deadline for submitting loan applications to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) for disaster-related losses to real and personal property.
"We want people to understand that this is merely an application deadline," said Joe D. Bray, Federal Coordinating Officer. "For individuals who have already applied, their cases will continue to be processed. It's just that we won't be accepting any new applications. We want to assure the applicants that the Disaster Helpline will continue to provide assistance and answer questions well into 2002."
Federal and State of Oklahoma disaster recovery officials urge those who have not done so to apply as soon as possible by calling the toll-free registration line at 1-800-621-FEMA from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday. Hearing or speech-impaired individuals may call the TTY registration number at 1-800-462-7585.
"Also, we want to let prospective applicants and those needing helpline assistance know that both systems will be closed over the Christmas Holiday period," said State Coordinating Officer Fred Liebe. "This will allow federal and state disaster workers the opportunity to spend this time with their families."
The disaster application line days and hours of operation through Friday, December 31, 2001, are:
Monday and Tuesday, December 24 and 25, 2001: closed.
Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, December 26, 27 and 28: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Monday, Dec. 31, 2001: final day,8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Helpline [1-800-621-FEMA] continues to be available to applicants Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. after the application period closes.