Lacey, Wash. - Nov. 5 through Dec. 2, 2021, severe storms threatened Clallam, Skagit, Whatcom counties and Lummi Nation, Nooksack Indian Tribe, and Quileute Tribe by bringing the largest and, for some areas, most severe, disaster to occur in history. As a result, over 1000 individuals were forced to evacuate.
In response to Governor Inslee’s request, President Biden approved a major disaster declaration Jan. 5, 2022. Since the declaration more than $11.2 Million in federal assistance has been approved for Washington homeowners, business owners and renters. The following is a snapshot of other numbers of significance as of March 22.
FEMA’s Individuals and Households Program (IHP) dispersed $5.85 Million dollars in aid to individuals eligible for assistance. Within this program, $5.19 Million in aid was used under Housing Assistance and $652,865 for other needs.
The U.S. Small Business Administration, the federal government’s primary source of money for long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property, approved $11.26 Million in loans to Washington homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes and private, nonprofit organizations. The $11.26 Million dollars approved includes $9.5 Million in home applications and $1.7 Million in Business/ Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) loans.
The National Flood Insurance Program provided $19.83 Million to claimants affected by the flooding. This again proves that Flood Insurance is the best tool for protecting one financially from the devastating effects of flooding.
FEMA's Individual Assistance program completed 1,686 home inspections and awarded 1,062 households with assistance.
A total of 1,414 survivors were assisted at the 12 local Disaster Recovery Centers (DRC) operating in Clallam, Skagit, Whatcom counties and Lummi Nation, Nooksack Indian Tribe, and Quileute Tribe. Each of these centers are now closed, but residents are reminded to keep in touch with FEMA by calling the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362.
Disaster Unemployment Assistance, funded by FEMA and administered by the U.S. Department of Labor and the Washington Employment Security Department was approved for this disaster. This program provides funding for Washington survivors who lost their jobs or have been unable to work due to the landslide and flooding. The program’s application deadline has been extended until April 8, 2022. Individuals that still have disaster-related unemployment needs can contact the Washington Employment Security Department by calling (855) 952-9988.
The Washington Pro Bono Council and the American Bar Association, Young Lawyers Division initiated the Disaster Legal services program during this disaster. This service allows callers to receive limited legal assistance from a volunteer lawyer. Disaster survivors facing legal issues related to the severe storms, flooding, landslides, and mudslides may call the hotline at 509-557-0301. Callers may also leave a message.
Under FEMA’s Public Assistance program, state, county and local governments as well as private nonprofit organizations and houses of worship may be eligible for reimbursement of eligible emergency work and the repair or replacement of disaster-damaged facilities. In all, 61 applicants have filed requests for Public Assistance to cover repairs and rebuilding.
Survivors who have questions about their FEMA application can contact FEMA by visiting online at DisasterAssistance.gov, using the FEMA mobile app or calling the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362. If you use a relay service such as video relay service (VRS) or captioned telephone service, give FEMA the number for that service. Helpline operators are available from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. local time daily. Press 2 for Spanish. Press 3 for an interpreter who speaks your language.
FEMA’s mission is helping people before, during and after disasters. The Washington State Military Department’s Emergency Management Division leads and coordinates mitigation, preparedness, response and recovery in Washington State to minimize the impact of disasters and emergencies on the people, property, environment and economy.