WICHITA, Kan. ? The state-federal Disaster Recovery Center at the Ramada Tower, 420 S.E. Sixth Ave. (Third Floor) in Topeka will transition to a Small Business Administration (SBA) Disaster Loan Outreach Center (DLOC) at the close of business on Tuesday, July 10. New hours will be 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays. The center will be closed on Sundays.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency?s (FEMA) Individual Assistance and Hazard Mitigation programs will not have a presence at the Topeka location after July 10.
"Transitioning this recovery center does not mean we are closing down registrations for disaster assistance," said Michael L. Karl, federal coordinating officer. "Kansans in the 21 counties designated for Individual Assistance can still register with FEMA by phone or on the Internet.
"Anyone still needing assistance should call the FEMA helpline, go to FEMA?s Web site or contact the SBA for help with their applications," said Angee Morgan, state coordinating officer.
The toll-free telephone registration and helpline, 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) is open from7 a.m. until 8 p.m. seven days a week. The number for residents with special speech or hearing needs is TTY 1-800-462-7585. Register online at www.fema.gov.
SBA representatives will continue to meet individually with each applicant to provide assistance in completing their disaster loan application, answer any questions about SBA?s disaster loan program, and accept completed disaster loan applications. Anyone not able to go to the SBA DLOC should call the SBA Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or TTY (800) 877-8339 for SBA information and assistance or visit the SBA website at www.sba.gov/services/disasterassistance
FEMA coordinates the federal government?s role in preparing for, preventing, mitigating the effects of, responding to, and recovering from all domestic disasters, whether natural or man-made, including acts of terror.
Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, sex, religion, national origin, age, disability, economic status or retaliation. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, you should call FEMA toll-free at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or contact your State Office of Equal Rights. If you are suspicious of any abuse of FEMA programs, please contact the Fraud hotline at 1-800-323-8603.
SBA is the federal government?s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. SBA helps homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes, and private non-profit organizations fund repairs or rebuilding efforts, and cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property. These disaster loans cover uninsured and uncompensated losses and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations. For information about SBA programs, applicants may call 800-659-2955.