CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- With the January 20 application deadline two weeks away, West Virginia residents affected by November's severe storms, flooding and mudslides have been approved for more than $22 million in disaster assistance to date, according to the Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
"We want to ensure that everyone affected by the November storms calls 1-800-621-3362 to register with FEMA before the January 20 deadline," said FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer Michael Bolch. "I would encourage anyone who sustained damage to call. Citizens shouldn't disqualify themselves."
The total includes funds for Individual Assistance, Crisis Counseling administered through the Department of Health and Human Resources, U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) low-interest disaster loans and Public Assistance to help state agencies and local governments. Details are outlined below:
The following is a summary of activities through Thursday, January 8, 2004:
- 7052 people have applied for assistance by way of FEMA's toll-free registration number.
- $11.9 million has been approved for housing assistance.
- $3.4 million has been approved for other disaster-related needs including medical, dental, personal property, transportation and funeral expenses not covered by insurance or other programs.
- Three Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) remain open - these centers in Greenbrier, Kanawha and Lincoln Counties will close permanently at 5 p.m. on Friday, January 9.
- 1,971 persons have visited the DRCs since they began operating.
- SBA has approved $4.2 million for low-interest disaster loans for individuals, families and businesses of all sizes.
- $500,000 was approved for crisis counseling services to help affected residents cope with the emotional consequences of a disaster. The number to call for assistance is 1-800-232-0020.
- Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) is available for those who live or work in the disaster -declared counties and whose jobs or business income was affected by the storms. The application period ends 30 days from the date the state announces a county will participate in the disaster declaration. Claims may be filed with local unemployment offices.
- Free legal services are available by calling 1-304-558-7993 for Charleston residents, and 1-866-989-8227 for residents of other disaster-affected areas.
- $2.4 million in Public Assistance has been approved for infrastructure projects including highway and bridge repairs.
Counties Eligible to Receive Individual Assistance and Number of Applications:
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