SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- The Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced today that disaster assistance has been made available for residents and business owners in Greene and Morgan counties. The additional assistance will help residents and business owners recover from the effects of the severe storms and tornadoes, which struck Illinois March 11-13.
Disaster-affected homeowners, renters, and business owners in Greene and Morgan counties are now eligible to apply for a range of state and federal disaster assistance programs under the major disaster declaration for Illinois issued by President Bush on March 28. Officials with IEMA and FEMA said the counties were found eligible for Individual Assistance based on a review of damage data gathered by state and federal disaster recovery officials. Greene and Morgan counties were previously designated for federal public assistance under the original federal disaster declaration of March 28.
"What this means is that residents and business owners in Greene and Morgan counties are now eligible to apply for assistance to recover from the recent severe weather," said Ron Sherman, FEMA's federal coordinating officer for the disaster recovery effort.
Affected Illinois residents and business owners may apply for assistance immediately by calling the toll-free registration number, 1-800-621-FEMA (3362), between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. CDT, Monday through Saturday until further notice. Those with a speech or hearing impairment may call TTY 1-800-462-7585. People also may register online at www.fema.gov.
"We're pleased for the citizens of Illinois that our request for assistance for Greene and Morgan counties was approved by FEMA and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security," said William Burke, state coordinating officer and director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA).
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.