Federal Aid Programs for the State of Florida Declaration[Press Release from FEMA.gov]
Following is a summary of key federal disaster aid programs that can be made available as needed and warranted under President Obama’s major disaster declaration issued for Florida.
Assistance for Affected Individuals and Families Can Include as Required:
- Rental payments for temporary housing for those whose homes are unlivable. Initial assistance may be provided for up to three months for homeowners and at least one month for renters. Assistance may be extended if requested after the initial period based on a review of individual applicant requirements. (Source: FEMA funded and administered.)
- Grants for home repairs and replacement of essential household items not covered by insurance to make damaged dwellings safe, sanitary and functional. (Source: FEMA funded and administered.)
- Grants to replace personal property and help meet medical, dental, funeral, transportation and other serious disaster-related needs not covered by insurance or other federal, state and charitable aid programs. (Source: FEMA funded at 75 percent of total eligible costs; 25 percent funded by the state.)
- Unemployment payments up to 26 weeks for workers who temporarily lost jobs because of the disaster and who do not qualify for state benefits, such as self-employed individuals. (Source: FEMA funded; state administered.)
- Low-interest loans to cover residential losses not fully compensated by insurance. Loans available up to $200,000 for primary residence; $40,000 for personal property, including renter losses. Loans available up to $2 million for business property losses not fully compensated by insurance. (Source: U.S. Small Business Administration.)
- Loans up to $2 million for small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives and most private, non-profit organizations of all sizes that have suffered disaster-related cash flow problems and need funds for working capital to recover from the disaster’s adverse economic impact. This loan in combination with a property loss loan cannot exceed a total of $2 million. (Source: U.S. Small Business Administration.)
- Loans up to $500,000 for farmers, ranchers and aquaculture operators to cover production and property losses, excluding primary residence. (Source: Farm Service Agency, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture.)
- Other relief programs: Crisis counseling for those traumatized by the disaster; income tax assistance for filing casualty losses; advisory assistance for legal, veterans’ benefits and social security matters.
How to Apply for Assistance:
- Affected individuals and business owners in designated areas can begin the disaster application process by registering online atwww.DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or by using a web enabled mobile device at m.fema.gov. Disaster assistance applicants who have a speech disability or hearing loss and use TTY should call 1-800-462-7585 directly and those who use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS) should call 1-800-621-3362. These toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. (local time) seven days a week until further notice. Applicants registering for aid should be prepared to provide basic information about themselves (name, social security number, address of the damaged home or apartment, address to receive mail, a current contact phone number, information about insurance coverage, description of damage, bank account and routing numbers for direct deposit of funds, and any other information to help substantiate losses.