Nashville, TN - A total of $5,878,995 in federal and state disaster aid has been approved thus far for Fayette and Shelby County residents who were affected by the July 21st and 22nd, 2003 severe storms, high winds and heavy rain. President Bush, at the request of Gov. Phil Bredesen, made the disaster declaration on July 29.
Of the $5.8 million, 3,905 Shelby County residents have applied for and received $5,841,642 in disaster aid, while 24 Fayette County residents have received $37,353 in aid.
Charles M. Butler, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) official in charge of the recovery effort, reminded storm victims, "Fayette and Shelby County residents who sustained damages due to the July 21st - 22nd severe weather, are urged to apply for disaster aid even if they have insurance. Applying for federal and state disaster assistance may provide a safeguard against unexpected storm damage costs occurring after insurance settlement has been paid."
The following is a breakdown of the more than $5.8 million in federal and state disaster aid approved for both Fayette and Shelby counties:
Individuals & Households Program (IHP) - $4,772,595
FEMA's IHP may provide housing assistance in the form of temporary housing or housing repair assistance to repair disaster-related damage not covered by insurance. Assistance may also be provided to cover uninsured or underinsured disaster-related expenses and serious needs, such as medical and dental expenses, funeral and/or other burial services, transportation, clean-up equipment, moving and storage expenses, room furnishings and appliances, and other serious needs.
U. S. Small Business Administration (SBA) - $1,106,400 (64 loans)
The U. S. Small Business Administration provides low-interest disaster loans to homeowners, renters and businesses for restoring or replacing uninsured or underinsured damage-related property. Businesses may also be eligible for disaster loans to repair or replace inventory, machinery and equipment not covered by insurance, as well as for working capital to assist them during the disaster recovery period.
TEMA Director James H. Bassham, said, "With more than 16,000 residents applying for disaster aid so far, we believe our message urging people to apply for federal and state disaster aid is getting out. It is important to remember, however, if an applicant receives an SBA loan application, it should be completed and returned as quickly as possible. Even if a disaster loan is not desired, the information contained in the loan application form helps determine one's eligibility for other disaster assistance."
Anyone who suffered severe storm, high wind or heavy rain damage during the July 21st - 22nd severe weather should call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) to apply for assistance. The speech or hearing impaired should call TTY 1-800-462-7585
On March 1, 2003, FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. FEMA's continuing mission within the new department is to lead the effort to prepare the nation for all hazards and effectively manage federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident. FEMA also initiates proactive mitigation activities, trains first responders, and manages Citizen Corps, the National Flood Insurance Program and the U.S. Fire Administration.