SALEM. -- Federal and state disaster officials announced today that almost $1.3 million in disaster assistance grants and loans has been approved for victims of Tropical Depression Jeanne since the Oct. 18 presidential declaration.
Here is a summary of activities for the period ending Nov. 11, 2004:
- In the three weeks since President Bush signed the disaster declaration, 921 homeowners, renters and businesses have registered for disaster assistance through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Registration clears the way for a variety of grant and loan programs to cover uninsured losses for individuals, and low-interest loans for businesses.
- FEMA and Virginia have approved $1,253,766 to pay for temporary housing, basic home repairs and essential needs. This figure includes $965,388 for Housing Assistance and $288,378 for other needs.
- The U.S. Small Business Administration has sent out 529 disaster loan applications and approved $17,400 in low interest loans. These loans serve as the government’s primary form of long-term recovery assistance. Individuals who do not qualify for a loan may be considered for a grant to cover serious unmet disaster-related needs, but first they must complete the SBA loan application.
If you sustained damage from Jeanne, you are encouraged to apply for assistance by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 1-800-462-7585 for the hearing and speech impaired. Telephone lines are open from 6 a.m. until midnight. You may also apply on-line at www.fema.gov.
Farmers who had damage from Tropical Storm Jeanne to their primary residence should register with FEMA. If access to the primary residence is limited due to storm damage, they should also register with FEMA. For other agriculture damage, farmers should contact their Farm Service Agency office.
The disaster declaration covers the cities of Salem and Roanoke and the counties of Alleghany, Botetourt, Craig, Roanoke, Montgomery, Giles, Patrick and Floyd.
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.