Saturday, July 29, 2006

Common Misunderstandings About Disaster Assistance

The disaster recovery process is difficult to understand at times. With many different programs, agencies and organizations involved, residents may be misled by rumors they hear about how to get help.

It begins with the application process. Homeowners and renters can still apply by calling the toll-free FEMA hotline, at 800-621-FEMA from 8am to 8pm, 7 days a week until further notice. The Disaster Recovery Center is still in operation at the South Vo-Tech in MarLin, six days a week.

One of the major misconceptions is about disaster assistance loans. All disaster assistance applicants who receive an SBA loan application packet must fill it out and return it, no matter what you believe your financial status to be. This program is the primary source of federal assistance for long-term recovery for homeowners, renters and businesses of any size. Also, by not completing the loan application, you may disqualify yourself for other needs assistance programs.

Finally, the goal of federal and state disaster assistance programs is to help people to be able to return to a safe and inhabitable home.

If you have any questions, please call 800-621-FEMA, or visit the disaster recovery center.


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