CHARLESTON, W. Va. -- West Virginians who suffered losses from the November storms, floods and landslides who have not yet applied for federal disaster aid must do so by January 20, 2004. Applications cannot be accepted after that date. Registering is easy and allows the professional staff to determine if you are eligible for assistance. Don’t disqualify yourself, apply by January 20 by calling the toll-free registration number 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). People with hearing or speech impairments should call TTY 1-800-462-7585.
Federal Coordinating Officer Michael Bolch of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) said, “We want to assure everyone that while we can’t take new applications after January 20th, those on file by the deadline will continue to receive full consideration for all eligible assistance.”
Applicants may qualify for assistance under a number of federal and state programs, such as disaster housing, grants to meet other disaster-related needs or a low-interest loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration. State Coordinating Officer Steven Kappa said, “Even those who have some insurance should apply so that they are in the system in the event of a shortfall on their insurance settlement.”
For answers to questions about disaster assistance programs or the location of the nearest Disaster Recovery Center, call the FEMA toll-free number: 1-800-621-3362.
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 the National Flood Insurance Program and the U.S. Fire Administration.