OAKLAND, Calif. -- The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) today approved the state of Nevada’s request for an extension of its program using federal funds to provide temporary hotel and motel housing for Hurricane Katrina and Rita evacuees. As one of 10 states housing a high concentration of the evacuee population nationwide, Nevada was eligible for an additional extension. The hotel/motel program now will end Jan. 7, 2006, as opposed to Dec. 15, 2005, in the state of Nevada.
Other states eligible to request the Jan. 7 extension are: Alabama, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee and Texas.
Federal Coordinating Officer for the Nevada recovery operation Karen E. Armes approved the extension following receipt of a housing placement plan and timeline from the Division of Emergency Management, Nevada Department of Public Safety. The extension was approved to accommodate efforts to move all evacuees in Nevada out of hotels and into apartments and longer-term housing.
FEMA continues to reach out to evacuees through public service announcements, local media, and by distributing flyers to evacuees in hotels and motels to provide them with further information about the assistance they may be eligible for and help in finding longer-term housing as needed. Evacuees are being contacted directly by state, voluntary organizations and FEMA representatives visiting hotels and motels. FEMA has also set up a housing referral service.
Evacuees who need help finding longer-term housing may contact FEMA’s housing locator service at 1-800-762-8740 or TTY 1-800-462-7585, open daily from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. EST. For other forms of assistance and questions, evacuees may contact FEMA’s help line at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 1-800-462-7585.
For individuals and families who were displaced from federally subsidized low-income housing by Hurricane Katrina and Rita or were homeless prior to Hurricane Katrina, the Department of Housing and Urban Development has a disaster assistance housing program available. To learn more, call 1-866-373-9509 or TTY 1-800-877-8339.
FEMA manages federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident. FEMA also initiates mitigation activities, works with state and local emergency managers, and manages the National Flood Insurance Program. FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on March 1, 2003. FEMA Region IX services the states of Arizona, California, Hawaii and Nevada, as well as territories in the Western Pacific.
Disaster recovery assistance is available to any individual without regard to race, color, sex, religion, national origin, economic status, or disability. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against in receiving disaster assistance, you may contact one of FEMA’s Equal Rights Officers (EROS) at 1-800-525-0321, or contact your State Office of Equal Rights.