December 13, 2002
Corpus Christi, TX -- Disaster aid has reached more than $27 million, according to state and federal officials. The following is a weekly update of the disaster recovery effort.
- Registrations for disaster assistance number more than 15,500 and officials from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) have inspected more than 11,000 properties.
- Approved eligible amounts for disaster housing assistance, in the 17-county disaster area, total more than $12.1 million. Disaster Housing Assistance checks are approved for qualified individuals whose property was damaged or who have incurred temporary housing expenses as a result of the storm system.
- More than $11.4 million has been approved for Other Needs Assistance, which may include medical, dental and funeral expenses as well as personal property, transportation, and other disaster-related serious needs.
- The U.S. Small Business Administration has issued over 6,500 applications and approved more than $3.9 million for low-interest loans to business owners, homeowners and renters.
- The 17 designated counties eligible for Individual Assistance are: Aransas, Brazoria, Cameron, Fort Bend, Hardin, Harris, Hildago, Jasper, Jefferson, Jim Wells, Kleberg, Liberty, Montgomery, Nueces, Orange, San Jacinto, and San Patricio.
- More than 1,000 people have received disaster-related information from the Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) at Leopard St. in Corpus Christi; 390 people have visited the Robstown DRC; the Beaumont DRC assisted more than 400 individuals and families, while the DRC in Houston helped just under 1,000 applicants. The Taft DRC logged more than 150 visitors since it's opening last Saturday (12/7).
- Two Disaster Recovery Centers will close their doors at the end of business today, Friday, December 13th. The Hidalgo Community Center, 102 Allende Street in Taft and the St. Andrews Church Hall, 1350 North 23rd Street in Beaumont will cease operations at 6:00 p.m. Those people in need of disaster-related information can still visit the three centers located at 3908 Leopard Street, Corpus Christi, the National Guard Armory, 1198 Bluntzer Road, Robstown, and 17507 Imperial Valley, Houston. These DRCs are scheduled to close Friday, December 20th at 6:00 p.m.
- Individuals who sustained disaster-related losses as a result of the tornadoes, severe storms and flooding from Oct. 24 - Nov. 15, must re-register for this disaster even though they may have received assistance for a previous disaster. Registration deadline for all those affected by this disaster is January 4, 2003. Those who have not yet registered need to call 1-800-621 FEMA (3362) or TTY 1-800-462-7585 for the speech or hearing impaired. The registration lines are open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. seven days a week with the exception of Sunday, December 15th. The lines will be closed due to maintenance. Calls will resume at 8 a.m. on Monday, December 16th.
- Long after a disaster has passed, both adults and children can be affected by stress. Crisis counselors are available at each DRC for anyone suffering from disaster-related emotional stress. Contact information for regional Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation centers can also be obtained at the DRC. Assistance is readily available for Spanish-speaking individuals.
- An informational meeting for voluntary agencies has been set for Hidalgo County. That meeting will be held in McAllen on Thursday, December 19th.
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