Salem, Ore. – It has been 10 months since the 2020 wildfires ravaged communities throughout Oregon. In that time, FEMA, along with its federal partners, has provided more than $160 million to help individuals, homeowners and renters on their road to recovery.
“We at FEMA, along with our state and federal partners, continue to commit ourselves to helping those affected by the 2020 wildfires,” said Federal Coordinating Officer in charge of recovery, Toney Raines. “Together we have worked diligently to provide grants, low-interest disaster loans and direct temporary housing.”
Federal Dollars Help the Recovery Effort
As of July 5, 2021, FEMA has provided more than $45.4 million in direct federal assistance that has been approved for individuals and households affected by last year’s wildfires. This includes:
- More than $29.9 million in housing assistance;
- More than $7.2 million in other needs assistance;
- More than $3.8 million through the Crisis Counselling Immediate Services and Regular Services Programs to assist individuals and communities in recovering from the psychological effects of disasters through community-based outreach and educational services; and
- More than $4.5 million to survivors to help them meet critical needs, such as unemployment assistance, legal services and immediate needs assistance.
The U.S. Small Business Administration has approved more than $61 million in low-interest disaster loans to businesses, private nonprofit organizations, homeowners and renters. To date, 561 loans have been approved, with 527 loans direct to homeowners and renters and 34 loans to help businesses get back on their feet.
Direct Temporary Housing
FEMA Individual Assistance has also provided direct temporary housing to those survivors who need safe, sanitary and functional housing while they rebuild or find more suitable permanent housing.
To date, more than $13.6 million has been spent to mission assign the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to build group housing sites in five eligible counties: Jackson, Lane, Lincoln, Linn and Marion. Sites in Lane and Jackson counties are still under construction. These FEMA group sites help provide additional temporary housing for disaster survivors, in the form of RVs, mobile home units and travel trailers.
Currently, units are placed on pads at Madrone Hill, Southern Oregon RV Park, Valley of the Rogue State Park (Jackson County), and sites constructed by USACE for FEMA in Totem Pole (Jackson County), Willow Estates (Jackson County), Mill City (Linn and Marion Counties) and Lincoln City (Lincoln County). In total, FEMA has spent more than $40.6 million in acquiring, installing and maintaining RVs, mobile home units and travel trailers for temporarily house survivors in eligible counties.
Also, in a first of its kind program, FEMA and USACE are in the process of restoring fire-damaged mobile home parks in Jackson County to increase availability of temporary housing.
The first of these sites, Totem Pole, has already been completed and is providing housing for 26 family households displaced by the disaster. Two other parks, Rogue Valley Mobile Village (Medford) and Coleman Creek (Phoenix) are in construction and should be ready for occupancy later this summer.
“Recovery takes time,” said Raines, “and FEMA will be here, boots on the ground, every step of the way.”
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 800-621-3362 (TTY 800-462-7585). Those who use a Relay service such as a videophone, InnoCaption or CapTel should update FEMA with their assigned number for that service. They should be aware phone calls from FEMA may come from an unidentified number. Multilingual operators are available. (Press 2 for Spanish)
Disaster survivors affected by the Oregon wildfires and straight-line winds can also get personalized mitigation advice to repair and rebuild safer and stronger from a FEMA Mitigation Specialist. For information on how to rebuild safer and stronger or to inquire as to your new flood risk following a fire near you, email FEMA-R10-MIT@fema.dhs.gov, a FEMA Hazard Mitigation specialist will respond survivor inquiries. When rebuilding check with your local building official and floodplain administrator for guidance.
FEMA's mission is helping people before, during, and after disasters.