ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- Five weeks after a federal disaster declaration for the recent spring floods and ice jams, $2,695,384 in federal recovery assistance has been directed to individuals in the Regional Educational Attendance Areas of Alaska Gateway, Kuspuk, Lower Yukon, Yukon Flats, Yukon-Koyukuk and Yupiit.
Registration, inspection and needs assessment sweeps have been completed in all declared areas; and to date, 596 individuals in 14 communities have registered for federal assistance. Funds directed through FEMA to individuals include:
- $1,278,588 in housing assistance to cover temporary rental assistance, home repairs and replacement.
- $497,996 in Other Needs Assistance (ONA) to cover essential personal property losses, subsistence items, medical, dental, funeral, transportation or other serious disaster-related expenses not covered by insurance. FEMA partners with the State to provide ONA grants.
- $918,800 in Small Business Administration loans to pay for the repair or replacement of homes and businesses, or personal property not fully covered by insurance or other compensation.
Registration for federal assistance through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is available to individuals until August 10, through a toll-free line at 1-800-621-3362, or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY); and online at www.disasterassistance.gov.
Also, a toll-free Alaska Disaster Helpline at 1-877-444-0829 is in place for anyone wanting to check on the status of their application, or who might have questions about having received a letter of non-eligibility from FEMA. Individuals are encouraged to call the helpline for information on how to meet eligibility requirements. FEMA staff will work to ensure each individual gets the help needed to address eligible disaster-related losses.
Another deadline approaching affects individuals who are unable to work at a job or at their own business as a direct result of the disaster, and who are not covered by regular unemployment benefits.
For individuals living in the REAAs of Alaska Gateway, Kuspuk, Yukon Flats and Yukon-Koyukuk, the last day to apply for Disaster Unemployment is July 23.
Because the REAAs of Yupiit and Lower Yukon were included in the disaster declaration at a later date, the last day to apply for disaster unemployment is August 8.
Specific information about how to apply for financial help through Disaster Unemployment Assistance is available through the Alaska Unemployment Insurance Claim Center at 1-888-252-2557.
Other Recovery Help
Disaster recovery help goes beyond direct financial assistance. Individuals in the designated disaster areas who have limited resources may get free disaster legal services. This service is funded by FEMA, orchestrated through the Alaska Legal Services Corporation and provided by the American Bar Association's Young Lawyer Division; the Alaska Bar Association's New Lawyer Section; and the Anchorage Bar Association's Young Lawyer Section.
The newly established Disaster Legal Services Hotline toll-free number is 1-800-478-5401. During the operating hours of 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (AKST), Monday through Friday, the hotline staff will direct individuals on how to get help with specific disaster-related legal concerns such as:
- Assistance with insurance claims (i.e. life, medical, property)
- Counseling on landlord/tenant issues
- Assistance wit...