Syracuse, NY -- Those affected by the summer storms have until tomorrow, October 28, to apply for the federal and state assistance programs and return completed SBA loan applications. At the request of Governor George E. Pataki, President Bush signed a major disaster declaration on August 29, 2003 to provide assistance to the counties affected during the severe storms, flooding and tornadoes that struck New York State between July 21, 2003 and August 13, 2003.
"Anyone who suffered damage during the summer storm, but has not yet applied
for disaster aid, should do so immediately," said Justo Hernández,
federal coordinating officer for the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA)
disaster recovery operation.
Those affected must register by calling toll-free 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TDD) for the hearing impaired. Both lines are open from 8:00a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Monday through Friday only.
Disaster programs available to eligible homeowners, renters and businesses in Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chemung, Columbia, Delaware, Fulton, Greene, Livingston, Montgomery, Ontario, Rensselaer, Schuyler, Steuben and Yates counties include home repair; temporary housing; disaster-related needs for personal property losses; reimbursement for medical, dental and transportation expenses; and low-interest disaster loans from the U. S. Small Business Administration (SBA).
Edward F. Jacoby, Jr., State Coordinating Officer and Director of the State Emergency Management Office (SEMO) said, "We are doing everything possible to make sure everyone affected by these storms receives the disaster aid they are entitled to. Federal and state assistance is available, but storm victims must take that first step and apply."
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.