WESTFIELD, Mass. -- Since the president declared a major disaster on June 15 for Hampden and Worcester Counties, just over $5 million in federal assistance has been approved for individuals and business owners.
Here is a summary through Wednesday, July 13, of all federal assistance to those who suffered losses due to the June 1 severe storms and tornadoes:
- There were 3,872 applicants who registered with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for some form of disaster assistance.
- FEMA has approved $2,924,260 in total housing and personal needs.
- Of that amount, $1,604,444 has been approved for Individuals and Households Program (IHP) expenses, including temporary rental assistance, home repair costs and assistance toward replacing destroyed homes.
- FEMA approved $1,319,815 in Other Needs Assistance to cover essential disaster-related needs, such as medical and dental expenses, funeral expenses, and personal property.
- The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) approved $2,104,800 in loans to homeowners, renters or business owners.
Low-interest SBA disaster loans are the largest source of federal recovery funding for homeowners, renters and business owners. They may provide financial assistance for repairing or rebuilding a home or replacing personal property, such as furniture, clothes and vehicles.
Applying for the SBA loan may open the door to FEMA grants that do not need to be paid back. The grants may be used to replace essential household items, replace or repair personal property and cover other disaster-related needs.
FEMA's housing assistance and grants for disaster-related medical and dental expenses, 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 the SBA to be eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses. Completing the loan application does not commit them to take a loan if it is offered, but applying for it is an important part of the federal financial disaster assistance process.
Individuals and business owners who sustained losses in the designated counties and who have not registered yet with FEMA may do so online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov, by smartphone through m.FEMA.gov, or by calling FEMA's toll-free registration line, 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). Individuals with a hearing or speech impairment may call TTY 1-800-462-7585, or use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS) to call 1-800-621-3362. Telephone registration is available from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., EDT every day, until further notice. Multi-language assistance is available.
SBA applications can be downloaded from www.sba.gov. Survivors may also visit SBA's secure website at DisasterLoan.SBA.gov/ELA/ to apply online for a low-interest disaster loan or call 800-659-2955 or (800-877-8339 TTY).
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.