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Recovery Update: Iowa Recovery Update 007

Release date: 
July 26, 2019
Release Number: 
DR-4421-IA RU 007


  • DR-4421 Major Disaster Declaration issued March 23, 2019
  • Incident Period: March 12 – June 15, 2019

Designated Counties

  • Ten counties have been designated for federal Individual Assistance to homeowners and renters: Fremont, Harrison, Louisa, Mills, Monona, Muscatine, Pottawattamie, Scott, Shelby and Woodbury.
  • Seventy-nine counties have been approved for Public Assistance to local governments and certain nonprofits for emergency and permanent work.
  • One county has been approved for Public Assistance for emergency work (debris removal and emergency protective measures) only.

FEMA Individual Assistance

The deadline to register was Tuesday, July 16, 2019. This applies to disaster survivors in the 10 Iowa counties designated for federal Individual Assistance due to the March 12June 15 severe storms and flooding. Iowa homeowners and renters who have registered are encouraged by recovery officials to “stay in touch” with the agency as their recoveries continue to progress.

Individual Assistance Provided (as of July 24):

  • Since the federal disaster declaration was granted for Iowa, there have been 2,723 total registrations for federal Individual Assistance.
  • Iowa homeowners and renters have received more than $14.6 million from the Individuals and Households Program. Of that, more than $12.9 million is in housing assistance and more than $1.7 million is in Other Needs Assistance. Other Needs Assistance provides money to eligible survivors for necessary expenses and serious needs caused by the disaster, such as personal property; medical and dental expenses; funeral and burial costs; moving and storage; and transportation.

Survivors may avoid delays in getting the appropriate assistance or in scheduling a home inspection by providing FEMA with any updated information. It’s important to keep FEMA advised if they have:

  • A change in their phone number.
  • A new secondary phone number (such as a new cell phone).
  • A change in their address (even if temporarily).
  • Any changes in their household.

There are two ways to update information:

  • Visit the FEMA website at to upload documents.
  • Call the toll-free FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362. Lines are open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week. Multilingual operators are available.

When updating status information, they must refer to their nine-digit number issued at registration. This number is on all correspondence from FEMA and is a key identifier in tracking assistance requests.

FEMA Helpline: Disaster survivors can get questions about their cases answered by calling FEMA’s Helpline at 800-621-3362. Phone lines are open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. local time seven days a week until further notice. Multilingual operators are available.

Direct Temporary Housing Assistance in Iowa

  • Seven applicants are licensed-in at Glenwood Mobile Home Park.
  • FEMA will refer any applicants currently eligible for direct housing who declined available commercial mobile home parks and whose current housing situation has changed since July 16 to the local Long Term Recovery Groups and Disaster Case Management process.

Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA)

  • DUA is available to eligible individuals in Muscatine County whose employment or self-employment was lost or interrupted due to severe storms and flooding March 12June 15, 2019. Eligible applicants in Muscatine County must file by Aug. 9, 2019. Individuals who want to apply for assistance must file a claim online at Claim applications can be filed online at any time. If assistance is needed over the phone, call IWD Customer Service at 866-239-0843.

Voluntary Agency Liaisons

  • FEMA Voluntary Agency Liaisons (VALs) have supported the formation of Long Term Recovery Committees in the 10 designated IA counties to help meet identified unmet needs of disaster survivors. VALs continue to attend meetings and conduct outreach in these counties.

Public Assistance

  • As of July 24, 374 Requests for Public Assistance have been submitted by governmental entities and nonprofits and have been approved as eligible for funds to repair or replace disaster-damaged infrastructure.

Hazard Mitigation

  • Hazard mitigation supports local projects intended to reduce or eliminate future disaster damage. The state has opened the grant application period for the hazard mitigation program to be offered statewide for eligible applicants in all 99 Iowa counties. 

National Flood Insurance Program

  • As of July 24, 318 flood insurance claims relating to the March 12June 15 flooding have been filed. More than $12.8 million in claims have been paid to date.

U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)


  • As of July 24, more than $29.3 million in U.S. Small Business Administration low-interest disaster loans have been approved for 320 homeowners and renters, and 27 businesses. The deadline to apply for a low-interest disaster loan also was July 16, 2019.
  • Information about how to apply for low-interest SBA loans for businesses and residents is available online at You may also call 800-659-2955 or email Individuals who are deaf or low‑hearing may call 800-877-8339.

Other Federal Agencies


  • Four federal agencies have been tasked by FEMA to assist in recovery efforts: 
  • The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) has deployed more than 118 AmeriCorps members to assist impacted communities in Fremont and Mills counties. Currently, there are 23 AmeriCorps members on the ground, serving full time until Aug. 10, 2019. AmeriCorps members have mucked out and gutted 87 homes. They have cleared 2,748 cubic yards of debris and have conducted 430 wellness/safety checks at survivors’ residences.
    • AmeriCorps has supported 397 volunteers during this effort.
    • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has provided technical support for FEMA’s Public Assistance and housing efforts.
    • The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency retrieved hazardous containers such as propane tanks and farm chemical tanks that were dislodged by the flooding in seven western Iowa counties. By the end of the effort in mid-June, 2,082 containers had been retrieved. The containers were recycled or otherwise disposed of properly.
    • The U.S. Geological Service (USGS) has documented high water marks to help document flood levels.

Disaster Legal Services:

Survivors in the 10 counties that were included in the presidential disaster declaration can get free legal help with issues such as assistance with home repair contracts and with life, medical and property insurance claims. Survivors can call the legal hotline at 833-885-9876 toll free, 9:00 a.m. 4:30 p.m. local time, Monday – Friday.

Crisis Counseling:

Iowans overwhelmed by prolonged effects of the disaster can call the Iowa Concern 24-hour line at 800-447-1985 to reach Project Recovery Iowa services or a stress counselor for assistance.

Iowa Disaster Case Management

Disaster Case Management is a time-limited resource and process that involves a partnership between a disaster case manager and a household impacted by a disaster to develop and carry out a disaster recovery plan. This partnership provides the client with a single point of contact to facilitate access to a broad range of resources, promoting sustainable assistance for an individual's or a household's recovery. These services are client-focused and provided in a manner consistent with standards for trauma-informed practice in human services.

Disaster Survivor Assistance (DSA) Teams

From March 28 through May 31, DSA teams visited 9,841 homes in the nine counties eligible for Individual Assistance. The teams directly registered survivors for assistance and provided accessible, in-person, case-specific information and referrals.

Additional Resources 

Iowa assistance:

The website features the latest disaster recovery information on a variety of topics ranging from cleaning up to hiring contractors for repairs and rebuilding.

FEMA assistance:

The website features all FEMA disaster-related news and key information for survivors specific to the March 12June 15, 2019 severe storms and flooding.

Small Business Administration assistance: or call SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955. The website details SBA assistance, including information on disaster loans and how to apply.

Housing – Rental Units:

Listing of rental units in Iowa that allows users to search a number of features, including short-term leases for flood-impacted Iowans.

Mortgage assistance:  or call 877-622-4866.

Iowa Mortgage Help assists in working with your loan servicer.

Military Homeownership Assistance Program

Iowa Contractor Registrations

Check to see if the contractor offering services to repair your home is registered with the state.
Iowa Consumer Protection (Fraud complaints): 

Consumer Protection Division of the Iowa Attorney General’s Office: Email: or call 515-281-5926; call toll-free outside of Des Moines: 888-777-4590. For information on Consumer Tips and Information, visit the Attorney General’s website.

Iowa Department of Human Rights: or call 515-242-5655

Disaster Behavioral Health Response Team: or call 515-281-3128

Responds to the mental health needs of Iowa residents following disasters and critical incidents.

Health information: or call 515-281-7689: Information from the Iowa Department of Public Health on your health and flooding such as cleaning, disinfecting, mold, immunizations, damaged items, flooded sewage systems, and mosquito-bite prevention.


Last Updated: 
July 26, 2019 - 16:35