Columbus, MS -- Mississippians affected by November's tornadoes who have yet to apply for federal disaster assistance have one month before the deadline.
January 13, 2003 is the last day to file applications for disaster assistance, according to federal and state disaster recovery officials.
"Anyone affected by the severe storms and tornadoes on November 10 and 11 should call the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) toll-free number at 800-621-FEMA (3362)," said State Coordinating Officer Leon Shaifer, "or TTY, 800-462-7585 for those who are hearing or speech impaired."
The telephone numbers are operational from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. CDT, daily until further notice.
"There is one month left to register for assistance," said Federal Coordinating Officer Michael Bolch. "If you, or anyone you know, has had damage or loss, call the FEMA number today, and encourage others you know to do so as well."
Homeowners, renters and business owners within the five Mississippi counties declared a disaster area by President Bush on November 14, may be eligible for assistance. State and federal disaster assistance covers basic needs only and will not normally compensate individuals for their entire loss.
Some disaster aid does not have to be paid back, while other types of help may come in the form of low-interest loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). Disaster loans from the SBA are the primary source of long-term recovery funds for repairing tornado damage.