FRANKFORT, Ky. -- Disaster aid may be only a phone call away. That phone call can open a full spectrum of aid programs to help in recovery.
After insurance, one of the major sources of assistance comes from the Federal Emergency Management Agency's Individuals and Household Program.? It provides temporary help in the form of alternative housing and financial assistance for other unmet needs. Examples of federal and Commonwealth disaster aid include:
- Rental assistance for temporary housing for those whose homes are unlivable;
- Grants for minimal home repairs and replacement of essential household items that are not covered by insurance to make damaged dwellings safe, sanitary and functional;
- Grants to replace personal property and help meet medical, dental, funeral, and other serious disaster-related needs not covered by insurance or other federal, state, and charitable aid programs;
- Individuals who lost work or whose business was damaged due to the Aug. 4 storm may be eligible for unemployment insurance (UI) benefits. Applications should be made through the Office of Employment and Training, an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. The deadline to apply is Sept. 20, 2009. Farmers and??? self-employed, who normally are not eligible for UI benefits, may qualify for disaster unemployment insurance;
- Low-income individuals may be eligible for free legal assistance. To apply, call the legal aid number, 877-424-4388, and leave a phone recording of your request for assistance. Phone lines will be monitored and applicants will be called back only on weekdays;
- Low-interest loans to cover homeowners, renters, and business owners for losses not fully compensated by insurance;
- Low-interest loans for businesses and certain private non-profit organizations that have suffered disaster-related cash flow problems and are in need of funds for working capital to recover from the disaster's economic impact.
- Other relief programs: Income tax assistance for filing casualty losses; advisory assistance for legal issues; veteran's benefits; and social security matters.
Individuals who have not registered can begin the disaster application assistance process by calling ??800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for the hearing- or speech-impaired, or online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov.
FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.
Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.
FEMA's temporary housing assistance and grants for Other Needs Assistance such as medical and dental expenses, and funeral and burial expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. However, applicants who receive SBA loan applications must submit them to SBA loan officers to be eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses.