ALBANY, N.Y. -- New York State renters who lost their home or personal property as a result of Hurricane Irene's flooding may be eligible for assistance from the New York State Office of Emergency Management (NYSOEM) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
"Disaster aid is not limited to homeowners," said State Coordinating Officer Andrew X. Feeney. "Eligible New York State residents who sustained damages in this disaster can receive assistance thanks to state and federal rental support programs designed to help them get back on their feet."
FEMA's Individual and Households Program (IHP) offers two kinds of housing assistance to renters:
- Funds to rent alternative housing for a limited period of time while repairs are made to their dwelling.
- Free referral service to find a safe replacement rental property.
Renters may also be eligible for Other Needs Assistance (ONA), designed to help survivors with uninsured, but necessary, expenses and serious needs caused by the disaster. ONA money may be used for:
- Disaster-related medical and dental expenses.
- Disaster-related funeral and burial expenses.
- Replacement or repair of necessary personal property lost or damaged in the disaster, including household items such as room furnishings or appliances, and tools and equipment required by the self-employed for their work.
- Primary vehicles and approved second vehicles damaged by the disaster.
"The storm and flooding affected both homeowners and renters," said Federal Coordinating Officer Philip E. Parr. "FEMA is here to ensure that all survivors obtain the assistance they are eligible to receive."
Residents of any of the 27 counties eligible for individual assistance are urged to apply as soon as possible. The counties are: Albany, Bronx, Clinton, Columbia, Delaware, Dutchess, Essex, Greene, Kings, Montgomery, Nassau, Orange, Otsego, Putnam, Queens, Rensselaer, Richmond, Rockland, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Suffolk, Sullivan, Ulster, Warren, Washington and Westchester.
Registering with FEMA is quick and simple. Call the FEMA Helpline at 1-800-621- 3362,
TTY 1-800-462-7585. Multilingual assistance is available by phone. The toll-free line is open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET, seven days a week until further notice. Applicants can also register online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or with a web-enabled mobile device or smartphone at m.fema.gov. Follow the link to "apply online for federal assistance." The deadline to apply is October 29, 2011.
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.