TOPEKA, Kan. -- Deadlines for local governments to apply for disaster assistance for damages or losses experienced from flooding, severe storms and tornadoes in June and July are approaching, disaster recovery officials said today.
Federal Coordinating Officer Philip Parr of the Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) said, "Agencies have 30 days from the day they were added to the presidential disaster declaration to signify their intent to apply for reimbursement of eligible disaster related costs or losses."
President Bush declared three Kansas counties - Geary, Shawnee and Wyandotte - on August 3, 2004, eligible to get reimbursements for disaster-related damages to public infrastructure, emergency protective measures and debris removal.
"For the first three counties declared on August 3, the deadline to apply is September 2," Parr said.
Altogether, government agencies and certain non-profits in 19 counties have been made eligible.
Butler, Cherokee, Ellis, Graham, Jewell, Labette, Lyon, Mitchell, Osborne, Phillips, Rooks, Rush, Russell, Smith, Trego and Woodson were added on August 9. The deadline for those counties is September 8.
Rocks and Woodson counties were added August 18. The deadline for those counties is September 17. Damages in other counties are still being assessed and other counties may be added to the declaration.
This assistance does not apply to individuals, homeowners, renters or business owners. It is restricted to state and local government agencies and certain non-profits, such as an electrical cooperative, that provides a government like service.
The assistance is provided under the FEMA/State of Kansas Public Assistance Program. FEMA provides 75 of the eligible reimbursements. The state and local government make up the 25 percent non-federal share. The Kansas Department of Emergency Management administers the program.
"Agencies or non profits with disaster related damages in the declared counties should contact the county emergency management office to begin the application process," said Maj. Gen. (KS) Tod Bunting, the Governor's Authorized Representative.
"Don't wait. Don't procrastinate," he added. "If you have disaster related losses or costs apply now.
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.