LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- Survivors of the storms, tornadoes and flooding that hit Franklin and Johnson counties May 24-26 can get their questions answered and register for state and federal assistance at Disaster Assistance Centers opening Saturday in Ozark and Clarksville.
Specialists with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and U.S. Small Business Administration will be on hand at the centers to ensure homeowners, renters and business owners are fully informed of the grants and low-interest disaster loans that may be available.
On Friday, President Barack Obama issued a disaster declaration for Franklin and Johnson counties, opening the door to state and federal Individual Assistance for eligible applicants.
The center in Franklin County is in the Ozark Elementary School Cafeteria, 1601 Walden Dr., Ozark; the Johnson County site is at the Marvin Vinson Center at 1611 Oakland St., Clarksville. Regular hours are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday. They will remain open until further notice.
Residents do not have to visit an assistance center to register with FEMA. They can register or check the status of an earlier registration by clicking www.disasterassistance.gov, calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 1-800-462-7585 or going to m.fema.gov on a web-enabled phone. Specialists are available by phone from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week. Multilingual operators are available.
Survivors who have already registered with FEMA this year do not need to register again, as they will automatically be rolled into the system for potential assistance. However, it's important they know that registering with the state, the Red Cross or any other agency does not mean they have registered with FEMA.
Meanwhile, FEMA Community Relations specialists on Saturday will begin going door to door to survivors' homes in the two counties to answer questions, and provide information on the centers' locations and FEMA registration.
Visit www.fema.gov or www.adem.arkansas.gov for news and information about this disaster. Follow FEMA tweets about the Arkansas disaster at www.twitter.com/femaregion6. Other online resources include blog.fema.gov, www.facebook.com/fema and www.youtube.com/fema.
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.