OLYMPIA, Wash. -- Since the Presidential disaster declaration was issued on January 30, 2009 for 15 Washington counties, nearly $5.5 million in federal disaster assistance has been paid to residents of those counties to help them recover from January's severe winter storms, landslides, mudslides and flooding, announced officials from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Washington Emergency Management Division (WEMD).
As of the close of business Thursday, 2,639 homeowners and renters have applied for disaster assistance. Inspectors have visited 2,117 homes. Grants awarded to date total $5,165,948, which includes:
- $4,807,003 in housing assistance to cover temporary rental assistance, home repairs and replacement
- $358,945 in other needs assistance to cover essential personal property losses, medical, dental, funeral, transportation or other serious disaster-related expenses not covered by insurance
In addition, $330,900 in Small Business Administration Home Loans has been awarded to pay for the repair or replacement of homes or personal property not fully covered by insurance or other compensation, bringing the total of disaster assistance so far to $5,496,848.
Applicants can register for FEMA assistance by calling, toll-free, 1-800-621-3362 (FEMA), TTY 1-800-462-7585, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week, or registering online at www.disasterassistance.gov.
Residents of the following counties are eligible to receive disaster assistance: Benton, Cowlitz, Clallam, Grays Harbor, King, Kittitas, Lewis, Mason, Pacific, Pierce, Skagit, Snohomish, Thurston, Wahkiakum and Whatcom.
Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) have been set up across the state as a resource for Washington residents. DRCs are established to help people without telephone or Internet service register and to answer specific questions about disaster assistance programs, registration and eligibility. It is not necessary to visit a Recovery Center to register for assistance.
The following DRCs are now open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday thru Saturday:
Disaster Recovery Centers:
Cowlitz Co. Training Center (The Boat House)
1942 First Street
Longview, WA 98632
South Hill Mall (located near the old J.C. Penny's entrance)
3500 S. Meridian, Suite 940
Puyallup, WA 98373
Kittitas Co. Fairground Western Village
1010 East 8th Avenue
Ellensburg, WA, 98926
Former Wilson Motors Toyota
405 East Champion Street
Bellingham, WA 98225
Issaquah City Hall, Eagle Room
130 E. Sunset Way
Issaquah, WA 98027
Bob Lyle Community Center
700 Main Avenue
Morton, WA, 98356
Stanwood Camano Community Fairground
Youth Exhibit Hall
6431 Pioneer Highway
Stanwood, WA 98292
FEMA leads and supports the nation in a risk-based, comprehensive emergency management system of preparedness, protection, response, recovery, and mitigation to reduce the loss of life and property and protect the nation from all hazards including natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other man-made disasters.