HELENA, Mont. -- A state and federal Disaster Recovery Center is opening in Billings to assist individuals and businesses that were affected by the storms and flooding this spring.
The Billings center opens at 1 p.m. on Friday, August 19, and will be staffed with disaster recovery specialists who can provide information and answer questions about flood-related assistance.
The center will be open Friday from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon. It will be closed on Sunday and reopen Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. The center will not be open after Wednesday, August 24, at 7 p.m.
The Billings Center is located at:
Faith Chapel Church
517 Shiloh Rd
The disaster recovery center in Joliet closed on Tuesday at 7 p.m. and the disaster recovery center in Crow Agency closed on Wednesday at noon. Residents of Carbon, Big Horn and other nearby declared counties are encouraged to visit the Billings recovery center if they have any questions and need face-to-face assistance.
"Many residents are in the process of getting payments from their insurance companies and are realizing they have a large amount of uncompensated expenses," said Montana Disaster and Emergency Services Administrator Ed Tinsley. "It is the goal of the state and federal government to encourage everyone who was affected to register with FEMA. Even if you are not experiencing problems now, other damage may appear down the road and you need to be registered now to receive assistance."
Homeowners, renters and businesses, whether insured or not, should register with FEMA by calling 800-621-FEMA (3362), or going online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov Registration by mobile device is also available at m.fema.gov Multilingual registration can be done by phone. If you have a speech disability or hearing loss and use a TTY, call 1-800-462-7585 TTY directly.
"Disaster Recovery Centers are a great resource to residents who have questions about flood-related assistance," FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer Doug Mayne said. "I strongly encourage those affected by the flooding to make registering with FEMA a priority. Even if you registered with your county office, you are not registered with FEMA," Mayne said. "The only way to register is to call or go online."
FEMA provides temporary housing assistance and grants for public transportation, medical, dental and funeral and burial expenses. By registering, individuals will also receive an application for a low-interest loan from the Small Business Administration. No one is required to take a loan from the SBA, but loan applications must be submitted to be eligible for the full range of assistance available from FEMA.
U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) representatives are at the disaster centers to answer any questions about SBA's low-interest disaster loan program for homeowners, renters, businesses and private non-profit organizations of all sizes. These loans are intended to repair or replace real estate and/or personal property damaged by the storms and flooding. Applicants have six months after approval to decide whether to accept the loan.
The Small Business Administration (SBA) is the federal government's primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. SBA helps homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes, and private, nonprofit organizations fund repairs and rebuilding efforts, and cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property. These disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations. For information about SBA programs, applicants may call (800) 659-2955 (TTY 1-800-977-8339).
FEMA's mission is to sup...