FEMA grants available to state flood victims
August 27, 2008 · Updated 4:46 PM
ARLINGTON The Federal Emergency Management Agency has already distributed more than $3.2 million in disaster recovery assistance for Washington state residents affected by flooding Nov. 2-11, but flood victims still have until Feb. 10 to register for state and federal assistance.
The most recent report by FEMA placed their total disaster recovery assistance monies disbursed to date at $3,205,901, while their records indicate that at least 1,754 people have applied for this assistance by calling FEMA, either toll-free at 1-800-621-3362 (FEMA), or 1-800-462-7585 for the speech-and hearing-impaired.
The Granite Falls Disaster Recovery Center is open Mondays through Saturdays, from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. to provide face-to-face assistance to flood victims who have already applied for FEMA aid, who may have further questions, and more than 770 applicants for assistance have been seen at Granite Falls and other such centers.
In the wake of the Nov. 2-11 floods, Snohomish and Skagit were among several counties for whom a federal disaster declaration was signed, authorizing individual assistance for those counties residents, including grants for housing repairs, rent assistance and other needs of the uninsured and the underinsured.
The recovery process for survivors of the November floods begins by calling FEMAs registration number, 5 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week, said Ramona VanCleve, FEMAs individual assistance external liaison.
The U.S. Small Business Administration is likewise offering low-interest disaster loans to homeowners, renters, businesses of any size and private nonprofit organizations, and has already approved more than $3.5 million in such loans to those whose properties were damaged by the Nov. 2-11 floods.
FEMA spokespersons cite the SBA as the federal governments primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property, and SBA representatives at all of the DRCs are continuing to meet individually with all applicants, to provide them with assistance in completing their disaster loan applications, to answer their questions about the SBAs disaster loan program, and to accept their completed disaster loan applications.
Applications for SBA disaster loans must be returned by Feb. 12. For more information on the hours of operation and location of the Granite Falls or other DRCs, you may contact the SBA Customer Service Center at 1-800-659-2955, or log onto their Web site at www.sba.gov.
Further details about assistance are available from the Washington State November Floods Helpline at 1-800-688-3469. State representatives are ready to answer specific and general questions about this disaster.