Syracuse, NY -- Homeowners, renters and business owners that suffered damage during the series of severe summer storms will have a final opportunity to meet face-to-face with federal disaster experts this Friday and Saturday as they return to the area for a two-day stop.
Staff from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the U. S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will establish a Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) at the Village of Angelica Offices, 21 Peacock Hill Road. The center will be open on Friday from 12 noon to 7 p.m. and on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Disaster experts will meet with residents face-to-face to answer their questions, provide recovery information and written material about the different assistance programs available for individuals and business owners, help them complete SBA low-interest loan applications and offer advice on how to avoid future damages.
"Some of the areas hardest hit by the summer storms were in Allegany County and we are returning there to make sure that anyone with questions about the disaster aid process or needs help with their application has immediate access to our staff," said Justo Hern?ndez, federal coordinating officer for FEMA?s disaster recovery operation.
At the request of Governor George E. Pataki, President Bush signed a major disaster declaration August 29, 2003 triggering disaster aid to Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chemung, Columbia, Delaware, Fulton, Greene, Livingston, Montgomery, Ontario, Rensselaer, Schuyler, Steuben and Yates counties. Madison, Sullivan and Wyoming counties were later added bringing the total to 17.
Individuals that suffered damage should register for disaster aid by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TDD) for the hearing or speech-impaired. Both lines are open from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., seven days a week. The deadline to apply is October 28, 2003.
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 Citizens Corps, the National Flood Insurance Program and the U.S. Fire Administration.