SALEM, Ore. -- Just one week remains to register for federal storm assistance. February 7, 2008 is the final day for individuals who were impacted by the severe storms, mudslides, landslides and flooding of December 1-17, 2007 to register for disaster assistance with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). February 7 is also the deadline for tribal governments and communities to file Requests for Public Assistance to participate in FEMA's Public Assistance Grant Program.
"Anyone living in one of the six counties declared for Individual Assistance who was impacted by the storms should apply for assistance," said State Coordinating Officer Abby Kershaw. "Don't miss this deadline because you think your damage is too minor to worry about, or because you have insurance," she said. "What seems to be minor flood damage now could turn into mold or structural problems later, and your insurance may not cover all of your repairs."
The deadline for homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes and private non-profit organizations who suffered property damages from the storm to return their loan applications to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is also February 7.
Oregonians who live in Clatsop, Columbia, Polk, Tillamook, Washington or Yamhill Counties who suffered damage during December 1-17, 2007 should call the FEMA registration line at 1-800-621-3362 (FEMA) or TTY 1-800-462-7585 for persons with special speech or hearing needs, and register for assistance by February 7, 2008. Registration line hours are from 8 a.m.-6 p.m., Pacific Standard Time, Monday-Friday. Applicants may also register any time online at www.fema.gov.
Applicants should contact their insurance company and file necessary claims before contacting FEMA, as government assistance does not cover damage or losses already covered by private insurance.
SBA customer service representatives are at the Vernonia Disaster Recovery Center and at the Disaster Loan Outreach Center in Astoria to explain how SBA low-interest disaster loans can help residents and businesses pay for their disaster losses, according to SBA officials. SBA representatives are available to meet with applicants one-on-one and assist them in filling out their loan applications. For center locations, dates and times, or for anyone not able to visit a center, call SBA at 1-800-659-2955 or visit SBA's website at www.sba.gov/services/disasterassistance.
FEMA manages federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident, initiates mitigation activities and manages the National Flood Insurance Program. FEMA works closely with State and local emergency managers, law enforcement personnel, firefighters, and other first responders.