NEWINGTON, N.H. -- Between May 25 when the Maine declaration was signed by President Bush and July 24, 2006 the registration deadline to apply for FEMA assistance, a total 1,200 registrations for assistance were received from residents in York County. On the final registration day, a total of 11 applications were recorded by FEMA officials.
"The most important piece of information for individual home owners, renters and business owners to realize is that even though the deadline to register is over, the FEMA presence in Maine will not disappear," according to Ken Clark, federal coordinating officer. A portion of our people will continue to work in Maine until September. After that, questions needing answers or help requests need to be directed to the FEMA HelpLine at 1-800-621-3362 (FEMA).
In the final Individual Assistance Daily Report, $931,066 in Housing Assistance and Other Needs Assistance grants were approved for 555 of the 985 applicants referred to the Individuals & Households Program (IHP) from York County.
An additional $1,903,800 in U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) low-interest loans were approved for 89 applicants. The IHP approved dollars coupled with the SBA funds amount to $2,834,866 for residents.
Additional final figures pertaining to Maine Disaster #1644:
IHP Housing Assistance approved $870,666 in grants for residents. A total of 947 referrals were made to the Housing Assistance program and 531 were approved. Of the approved number, the average grant amounted to $1,640.
The IHP Other Needs Assistance disbursed grants in the amount of $60,400 to 100 households making the average grant under that program $604.
There were a total of 1,008 inspections issued and 1,000 returned to FEMA. Ninety-nine percent of the inspections were completed before the application deadline with an average turn-around time of 1 day 17 hours and 45 minutes.
The SBA issued 971 home loan applications and 169 business applications. A total of 171 of the applications were received back by SBA and 89 of those returned were approved for low interest loans amounting to $1,903,800.
York County entities applied for six public assistance categories which included the following: Debris removal - $28,532; Protective Measures - $334,371; Roads and Bridges - 935,749; Water Control Facilities - $29,613; Public Buildings - $3,157 and Public Utilities - $25,712 for a total of $1,357,136.
"For the 1,200 residents who registered for assistance from FEMA, the May flooding was disastrous. If any good can be found in the incident it was that no Maine resident lost their life due to the disaster and second it served to cement the affected county together as neighbors helped neighbors recover. Finally, it magnified again, the need for anyone in or near the floodplain to give strong consideration to carrying flood insurance," said Steve Burgess, state coordinating officer, Maine Emergency Management Agency.
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.