ATLANTA – Georgia residents who suffered damage in recent severe storms should be aware that the help they receive will be based on their unique circumstances and needs.
"We want everyone to receive the maximum assistance for which they are eligible," said Gracia Szczech, federal coordinating officer for the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) disaster operations in Georgia. "The amount and type of assistance an individual receives could be completely different from what his neighbor receives, even though the damages appear to be similar."
Registering with FEMA is a crucial first step in the process. Disaster assistance for individuals is based on a number of factors which can only be determined after registration.
Homeowners, renters, and business owners who suffered damages as a result of the April 27-28 storms and tornadoes and who live or work in one of the 25 federally declared Georgia counties are urged to register. The declared counties are: Bartow, Catoosa, Cherokee, Coweta, Dade, Greene, Habersham, Harris, Heard, Floyd, Gordon, Lamar, Lumpkin, Meriwether, Monroe, Morgan, Newton, Pickens, Polk, Rabun, Spalding, Troup, Upson, Walker and White.
Residents can register:
- By telephone at FEMA’s toll-free number, 1‑800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY/TDD 1‑800-462-7585 for those with speech or hearing functional needs. Phones will be answered between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. seven days a week. Multi-lingual operators are available.
- Online anytime at www.disasterassistance.gov.
- On a Web-enabled mobile device or smartphone at m.fema.gov.
- At Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) operating in 13 of the federally declared counties. Location of the nearest DRC is available when registering by phone or by going online to /disaster-recovery-centers.
The unique needs of everyone who registers are evaluated on a case-by-case basis to determine the types of assistance that are available to that individual. The process and final assistance determination is set by federal law. Not everyone who registers will qualify.
Assistance could include charitable contributions from voluntary agencies, grants to help pay for temporary housing needs, essential home repairs and other disaster-related expenses, and low-interest loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to cover residential and business losses not fully compensated by insurance.
Full information on FEMA’s Individual and Household Assistance Program can be found at www.fema.gov/media/fact_sheets/individual-assistance.shtm.
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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.
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