published Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011

FEMA aid deadline one week away

WHAT TO DO

To register with FEMA, call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or visit www.DisasterAssistance.gov. The hearing impaired can call TTY 800-462-7585. The toll-free helpline operates daily from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. local time.

To apply for a federal loan from the Small Business Administration, call 800-659-2955 or visit www.sba.gov


BEFORE YOU APPLY

Have the following information available:

* The address of the affected property

* A brief description of the damage

* A current mailing address

* Social Security number

* Insurance information, including policy numbers

* A contact number or alternate such as a cell phone or work number


BY THE NUMBERS

Total FEMA registrations and money approved as of Aug. 2 in Southeastern Tennessee:

* Bledsoe -- 111; $429,272 approved

* Bradley -- 1,588; more than $1.2 million approved

* Hamilton -- 2,369; $1.5 million approved

* Monroe -- 284; $170,444 approved

* Rhea -- 64; $327,044 approved

The clock is ticking down for those needing to apply for storm recovery assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The deadline is just a week away — Tuesday.

Though at least 4,500 people in Eastern Tennessee's tornado-stricken counties have registered with the federal disaster relief organization, there are still storm victims who haven't taken the first step toward federal aid, FEMA officials say.

"Often people have applied for disaster assistance, but they may have gotten a letter stating they were denied at the time or needed to provide more information. Those people should inquire about the status of their application," said Susan Solomon, FEMA public information officer.

Other residents and business owners may not have returned their Small Business Administration loan applications, which also are due Tuesday.

Homeowners, business owners and renters with storm-damaged property all are eligible for relief, even if they are covered by insurance, FEMA officials emphasize.

Even those who already have made repairs still may be eligible for reimbursement for their expenses.

Drivers with storm-damaged vehicles that are covered by liability insurance but not comprehensive insurance also are eligible for help.

Initial registration with FEMA takes no paperwork and requires a phone call that takes about 30 minutes.

Applicants generally receive a response from FEMA within 10 days after registering. Anyone who has not received mail from FEMA more than 10 days after registration should call the organization.

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FEMAPIO said...

Renters, homeowners, and business owners with damages from the April 25-28 storms are encouraged to register with FEMA and return the U.S. Small Business Administration(SBA) application by the August 9th deadline.

If you live in one of the 17 disaster-declared counties and have damages from the April 25-28 severe storms, straight-line winds, tornadoes, and associated flooding, you should register with FEMA if you are unisured or insured. Even if you have insurance, you may have damages that are not fully covered by insurance. FEMA does not duplicate payments for damages or losses covered fully by insurance.

Do not lock yourself out of help for possible hidden damages such as roof damage and foundation damage, register with FEMA by the August 9th deadline and be sure to return the SBA application even if you do not want to borrow money. If you are denied a loan, this opens the door for consideration for other needs assistance grants from FEMA to help repair your home, replace essential household items, repair a damaged vehicle used to get to work or school (licensed with liability insurance but not comprehensive insurance), and essential personal property.

Renters and homewowners who still need temporary housing, if their damaged residence is uninhabitable or destroyed, should register with FEMA by calling 1-800-621-FEMA(3362).

If you have already made your repairs or replaced essential items damaged due to the April 25-28 severe storms, register with FEMA and return the SBA application to apply for disaster assistance for those expenses.

The SBA offers low-interest loans for disaser-related losses to renters, homeowners, and business of all sizes.

Call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) if you have any questions about disaster assistance from FEMA or go to www.disasterassistance.gov.

Information is also available at www.fema.gov and www.sba.gov. Remember the deadline to register with FEMA and rturn the SBA application is August 9th, 2011.

August 3, 2011 at 9:22 a.m.
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