Washington, DC -- The head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced today that federal assistance for Missouri has been expanded to include aid for homeowners, renters and businesses in 19 counties affected by the storms and tornadoes that struck the southeastern part of state in late April.
FEMA Director Joe M. Allbaugh quickly approved the additional assistance based on a further review of damage data gathered by federal and state disaster recovery officials and needs documented by Missouri's Congressional delegation in Washington. Federal aid was initially designated for the state and local governments in Bollinger, Butler, Carter, Howell and Madison under the major disaster declaration issued by President Bush on May 6.
"We remain committed to delivering assistance wherever it's needed and to making sure that every qualified individual and family receives the help they need to get back on the road to recovery," Allbaugh said.
The 19 counties designated today for aid to stricken residents and business owners include Bollinger, Butler, Carter, Howell and Madison, and the contiguous counties of Cape Girardeau, Douglas, Dunklin, Iron, Oregon, Ozark, Perry, Reynolds, Ripley, Shannon, St. Francois, Stoddard, Texas and Wayne.
The added assistance can include grants to help pay for temporary housing, emergency home repairs and other serious disaster-related expenses. Low-interest loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration also will be available to cover residential and business losses not fully compensated by insurance.
Affected residents and business owners in the designated counties may apply for assistance immediately by calling the toll-free registration number 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m., seven days a week until further notice. Those with a speech or hearing impairment may call a special TTY number at 1-800-462-7585.