LINCOLN, Neb. -- Nebraskans who were affected by the severe storms, tornadoes and flooding that swept the state from May 22 - June 24, 2008 have less than four weeks to apply for disaster aid. The last day to register is Tuesday August 19, 2008.
Nebraska Emergency Management Agency and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) officials said anyone who had disaster losses should call FEMA's toll free number, 1-800-621-FEMA. People with hearing or speech impairments can call TTY 1-800-462-7585. Registration can also be done online at www.fema.gov/assistance.
"It only takes about 20 minutes to register when you call or fill out the application online," said FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer, Willie Nunn. "It's the best way to find out if you are eligible for a grant or low interest disaster loan. A lot of people may qualify even if they have some insurance coverage. "
People are also welcome to visit a Disaster Recovery Center, but are encouraged to first register by phone or online to help speed the application process. Recovery centers in Ceresco, Omaha and Schuyler close this week. Centers remain open in Buffalo and Dawson Counties. Call 1-800-621-FEMA or TTY 1-800-462-7585 to find out the address of a center near you.
"We hope anyone who had damages and lives or works in the counties under the disaster declaration will not miss out by neglecting to apply by August 19th," said State Coordinating Officer Cindy Newsham. "Nebraskans have suffered a lot from weather events lately. We want to help them resume normal lives."
The declared counties are Buffalo, Butler, Colfax, Custer, Dawson, Douglas, Gage, Hamilton, Jefferson, Kearney, Lancaster, Platte, Richardson, Sarpy and Saunders.
U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) applications for physical damage must be completed and returned by August 19th. Application for SBA economic injury loans must be returned by March 20, 2009.
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.