COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Officials urge Missourians who suffered losses due to severe storms, tornadoes and flooding on March 8 through 13, 2006, to apply for assistance soon if they have not already done so. According to the Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the State of Missouri Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), the deadline for applying for aid under President Bush's disaster declaration is Monday, May 15, 2006.
In Missouri counties designated for disaster assistance, a variety of aid is available to eligible individuals, families and businesses under FEMA's Individual Assistance program. Applicants may be eligible for housing assistance grants for repairs and short-term rentals, low-interest loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), and Other Needs Assistance grants.
Individual Assistance in the following counties: Bates, Benton, Boone, Carroll, Cass, Cedar, Christian, Cooper, Crawford, Greene, Henry, Hickory, Howard, Iron, Jefferson, Johnson, Lawrence, Lincoln, Mississippi, Monroe, Montgomery, Morgan, New Madrid, Newton, Perry, Phelps, Pettis, Putnam, Randolph, Saline, Scott, St. Clair, St. Genevieve, Taney, Vernon, Webster and Wright.
Missourians who suffered losses are encouraged to apply immediately by calling the toll-free number 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY number is 1-800-462-7585 for the speech or hearing-impaired. Telephone lines are open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. CDT, seven days a week. People may also apply using the Online Individual Assistance Center.
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 (NFIP). FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on March 1, 2003.