HONOLULU, Hawaii -- The Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) at the Kaua’i War Memorial Convention Hall will close on Friday, May 26, at the close of business, 7 p.m. Beginning Tuesday, May 29, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will re-open as an SBA Outreach Center in a new location at 4280 Rice Street (the former Hale Kauai Building), Lihue, Hawaii.
SBA Customer Service Representatives will continue to provide individuals and business owners with face-to-face service in completing their loan applications, answering their questions about SBA’s disaster loan program, and explaining how SBA disaster loans can help them pay for their disaster losses. SBA’s Outreach Center will be open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Mondays through Fridays and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturdays, beginning May 29.
The DRC was originally staffed by federal, state and local officials and by volunteer agencies to provide disaster assistance information and to answer questions from residents and business owners who suffered damages as a result of the recent severe storms.
“Although the DRC is closing, at this stage of the recovery process we believe the opening of an SBA Outreach Center will better meet the long-term needs of disaster affected citizens,” said Michael Karl, federal coordinating officer for the disaster.
Low interest disaster loans from SBA are available to homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes and private non-profit organizations. Disaster loans from SBA are the primary source of funds for repairing and rebuilding disaster-damaged private property. Disaster victims are encouraged to visit an outreach center or call the SBA at 1-800-659-2955 if they have any questions about the recovery process.
Homeowners, renters and business owners in the City and County of Honolulu and Kaua’i County who had damage from the recent severe storms and flooding who have not already applied with FEMA should call and register as soon as possible. Applicants who have questions about the status of their FEMA applications or want to update information in their files, should also call the toll-free number. Both registration and the helpline can be reached at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for the hearing- or speech-impaired, from 5 a.m. to 6 p.m. (local time) Monday through Saturday. Registration can also be done online at www.fema.gov.
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 a part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on March 1, 2003.