Atlanta, GA -- Gracia Szczech, Federal Coordinating Officer (FCO) of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), announced today that disaster assistance has been made available for 16 additional Alabama counties to help residents recover from the effects of the recent severe storms, tornadoes and flooding.
FCO Szczech said the counties were added to the list of eligible jurisdictions based on a continuing assessment of damage data gathered by federal and state disaster recovery officials.
The designation means that residents and business owners in the counties of Barbour, Bullock, Chambers, Cherokee, Clay, Cleburne, Colbert, Coosa, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Lee, Limestone (already designated for public Assistance), Macon, Randolph, Russell and Tallapoosa are eligible to apply for housing assistance, low-interest loans to repair or replace damaged property, or grants for other needs and necessary expenses not met by other programs.
In addition, communities and some non-profit agencies in Chambers, Clay, Cleburne, Jefferson, Lauderdale, Marshall, Randolph, Russell, St. Clair and Talladega have been added to those counties eligible for 75 percent federal share of the costs of emergency services, debris removal and to repair or replace public facilities such as roads, bridges, buildings and utilities, said Terry Martin, Alabama State Coordinating Officer.
Affected residents and business owners in the newly declared counties may apply for assistance immediately by calling the toll-free application number, 1-800-621-FEMA (3362), which is available daily between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. until further notice. Those with a speech or hearing impairment may call a special number, TTY 1-800-462-7585.
The additional counties brings to 32 the number eligible for the individual and public assistance programs authorized as a result of a major disaster declaration issued by President Bush on May 12 following a request by Governor Riley.
The 32 counties in which individuals and families are now eligible for assistance are: Barbour, Bibb, Blount, Bullock, Calhoun, Chambers, Cherokee, Clay, Cleburne, Colbert, Coosa, Cullman, DeKalb, Etowah, Jackson, Jefferson, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Lee, Limestone, Macon, Madison, Marshall, Morgan, Randolph, Russell, Shelby, St. Clair, Talladega, Tallapoosa, Tuscaloosa and Walker.
The 14 counties now eligible for assistance to local governments and selected non-profit organizations are: Chambers, Clay, Cleburne, DeKalb, Jackson, Jefferson, Lauderdale, Limestone, Madison, Marshall, Randolph, Russell, St. Clair and Talladega.