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Parish President Thomas would like residents to know of the following: Please continue to scroll down as information is continuously uploaded

News Release

May 19, 2016

NR: 083

News Desk: 225-382-1599

Help Remains for Louisiana Disaster Survivors after Disaster Recovery Center Closes in Washington Parish

BATON ROUGE, La. – The Washington Parish Disaster Recovery Center in Franklinton will close on Saturday, May 21 at 4 p.m.

The center is located at the following address:

Eastgate Shopping Center

1926 Washington St.

Franklinton, La.

Louisiana disaster survivors in Washington Parish may still visit centers in other parishes to meet with recovery officials. For other locations go to fema.gov/disaster-recovery-centers or call

800-621-3362.

Residents can still register for disaster assistance or ask questions by calling the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362 or (TTY) 800-462-7585. Those who use 711/VRS can call 800-621-3362. Lines are open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week until further notice. They can also register online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or www.fema.gov/disaster/4263. Registration ends on Monday, June 13. Cuando llame al 800-621-3362 (FEMA) marque el 1 y escuche las instrucciones en español. Favor llamar antes del lunes 13 de junio.

Call the helpline to:

? Ask questions about FEMA determination letters.

? Learn how to appeal FEMA’s determination. All applicants have the right to appeal.

? Inquire about the status of a registration.

? Provide change of address, telephone and bank account numbers and insurance information to avoid disaster assistance processing delays.

? Receive information about FEMA home inspections.

? Get other questions answered about federal disaster assistance.

FEMA advises applicants to have their nine-digit FEMA registration number on hand when they call. They also will be asked to verify their identity if they want access to their information.

***

Louisiana Disaster Survivors Have More Time to Register for Recovery Help
Release date: 
May 5, 2016
Release Number: 
NR: 067
Baton Rouge, La. – Louisiana disaster survivors in 36 parishes have an extra 30 days – until June 13th – to register with the Federal Emergency Management Agency for recovery assistance.

The Louisiana Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP) requested the extension to provide more time for Louisiana residents with disaster damage that occurred March 8 through April 8, to apply for assistance.

If you are a homeowner or a renter in one of the designated parishes you are eligible to register. Businesses may be eligible for disaster loan help from the U.S. Small Business Administration, but are not eligible for FEMA recovery grants.

The extension applies to all 36 designated parishes: Allen, Ascension, Beauregard, Bienville, Bossier, Caddo, Caldwell, Calcasieu, Catahoula, Claiborne, De Soto, East Carroll, Franklin, Grant, Jackson, La Salle, Lincoln, Livingston, Madison, Morehouse, Natchitoches, Ouachita, Rapides, Red River, Richland, Sabine, St. Helena, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, Union, Vernon, Washington, Webster, West Carroll and Winn.

Registration is quick and easy. Go online to DisasterAssistance.gov or call the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362 or TTY 800-462-7585. Folks who use 711 Relay or Video Relay Services may call

800-621-3362. Help is available in most languages and phone lines are open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week. Cuando llame al 800 621-3362 (FEMA) marque el 1 y escuche las instrucciones en español.
 

***

News Release

April 26, 2016

NR: 056

News Desk: 225-382-1599

Disaster Recovery Center in Bogalusa, Washington Parish Transitions to SBA Disaster Loan Outreach Center for Louisiana Survivors

BATON ROUGE, La. – The disaster recovery center in Bogalusa (Washington Parish) will transition to a U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Disaster Loan Outreach Center beginning Thursday, April 28.

The Bogalusa disaster recovery center will close Wednesday, April 27, at 6 p.m. and then open as an SBA disaster loan outreach center at a new address:

Washington Parish Library

304 Avenue F

Bogalusa, La.

The disaster loan outreach center will be open Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Wednesday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Representatives from the SBA will be available at the center to meet individually with Louisiana residents and business owners who sustained damage as a result of the severe storms and flooding from March 8 – April 8. Representatives will answer questions, explain SBA’s disaster loan program, help complete loan applications and close approved disaster loans.

Louisiana disaster survivors in Bogalusa may still visit other disaster centers to meet with recovery officials. There is disaster recovery center in Washington Parish located at the following address:

Eastgate Shopping Center

1926 Washington St., Suite 1924

Franklinton, La.

For other locations go to fema.gov/disaster-recovery-centers or call 800-621-3362.

Residents can still register for disaster assistance or ask questions by calling the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362 or (TTY) 800-462-7585. Those who use 711/VRS can call 800-621-3362. Lines are open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week until further notice. They can also register online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or www.fema.gov/disaster/4263.

Call the helpline to:

? Ask questions about FEMA determination letters.

? Learn how to appeal FEMA’s determination. All applicants have the right to appeal.

? Inquire about the status of a registration.

? Provide change of address, telephone and bank account numbers and insurance information to avoid disaster assistance processing delays.

? Receive information about FEMA home inspections.

? Get other questions answered about federal disaster assistance.

FEMA advises applicants to have their nine-digit FEMA registration number on hand when they call. They also will be asked to verify their identity if they want access to their information.

We urge everyone to continue to use caution in areas where floodwaters remain. Monitor DOTD’s www.511la.org website for updated road closure information. Look for advisories from your local authorities and emergency managers. You can find the latest information on the state’s response at www.emergency.la.gov. GOHSEP also provides information on Facebook and Twitter. You can receive emergency alerts on most smartphones and tablets by downloading the new Alert FM App. It is free for basic service. You can also download the Louisiana Emergency Preparedness Guide and find other information at www.getagameplan.org.

Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.

FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards. Follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/femaregion6 and the FEMA Blog at http://blog.fema.gov.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. SBA helps businesses of all sizes, private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters fund repairs or rebuilding efforts and cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property. These disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations. For more information, applicants may contact SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center by calling (800) 659-2955, emailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov, or visiting SBA’s Web site at www.sba.gov/disaster. Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals may call (800)877-8339.

###


Disaster News

Loans for Businesses, Private Nonprofits, Homeowners and Renters

Disaster Field Operations Center–West, P.O. Box 419004, Sacramento, CA 95841

Release Date:  April 18, 2016
Media Contact:  Richard Jenkins
Release Number:  LA 14667-05
Phone:  (916) 735-1500
SBA Tops $51 Million in Disaster Assistance Loans

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – District Director Michael Ricks of the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Louisiana Office announced today that SBA has approved more than $51 million in federal disaster loans to help Louisiana businesses and residents impacted by severe storms and flooding that occurred March 8 – April 8. According to Ricks, SBA has approved 49 business disaster loans for nearly $3.2 million and 980 residential disaster loans for more than $48.5 million to help rebuild from this disaster.

 

“SBA is committed to helping businesses and residents rebuild their homes and businesses as quickly as possible,” said Ricks. Individuals and business owners who sustained damages are encouraged to register prior to the May 12 deadline with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) by calling the tele?registration number at (800) 621?FEMA (3362) or (800) 462-7585 (TTY) for individuals who are deaf or hard?of?hearing. “Don’t miss out on any assistance you may be entitled to by not registering for help. You don’t need to wait for your insurance to settle or obtain a contractor’s estimate,” he added.

 

SBA customer service representatives are still meeting personally with business owners and residents at federal-state Disaster Recovery Centers throughout Louisiana, SBA’s Business Recovery Center in Monroe and the SBA Disaster Loan Outreach Center in Covington.

 

Businesses of all sizes and private nonprofit organizations may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory, and other business assets. The SBA can also lend additional funds to help business and residents with the cost of making improvements that protect, prevent or minimize the same type of disaster damage from occurring in the future.

 

For small businesses and most private nonprofit organizations of all sizes, SBA offers Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) to help meet working capital needs caused by the disaster. EIDL assistance is available regardless of whether the business suffered any property damage.

 

Disaster loans up to $200,000 are available to homeowners to repair or replace their damaged or destroyed primary residence. Homeowners and renters are eligible for up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged or destroyed personal property.

 

Business owners and individuals may apply online using SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.

 

Disaster loan information, locations and application forms are available from SBA’s Customer Service Center by calling (800) 659?2955 or emailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov. Individuals who are deaf or hard?of?hearing may call (800) 877?8339. For more disaster assistance information or to download applications, visit https://www.sba.gov/disaster. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX  76155.

 

The deadline to apply for property damage is May 12, 2016. The deadline to apply for economic injury is Dec. 13, 2016.

***

Please note that the two FEMA disaster centers in Washington Parish are some of the ones affected by the closure on Sundays ONLY. They will remain opened Monday - Saturday.

Several Disaster Recovery Centers Will No Longer Be Open Sundays, But Help Remains for Louisiana Disaster Survivors

Release date: April 15, 2016

...
Release Number: NR: 044

BATON ROUGE, La – All but eight disaster recovery centers will not be open on Sundays beginning April 17, but help will still be available for Louisiana disaster survivors every day.

The following centers will remain open seven days a week:

Monroe Civic Center
401 Lea Joyner Expressway
Monroe, La.

Sheriff’s Office of Community Services
726 3rd Street
Natchitoches, La.

National Guard Pavilion RSA
62589 Holloway Road
Roseland, La. Franklin Parish Public Works Building
8327 Highway 17
Winnsboro, La.

Dr. Charles Garrett Community Center
182 Industrial Drive
Jonesboro, La. Health Unit Building
53 N. 2nd Street
Greensburg, La.

Kinder Fire Department
808 2nd Ave.
Kinder, La.

Old Martin Junior High School
825 Highway 8
Sicily Island, La.

 

Hours of operation remain 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday for all centers. Those remaining open on Sundays will have noon to 5 p.m. hours. Survivors may visit FEMA.gov/disaster-recovery-centers or call 800-621-3362 to locate centers near them.

Survivors can register for disaster assistance or ask questions on Sundays by calling the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362 or (TTY) 800-462-7585. Those who use 711/VRS can call 800-621-3362. Lines are open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week until further notice. They can also register online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov.


Call the helpline to:
•Ask questions about FEMA determination letters.
•Learn how to appeal FEMA determination letters. All applicants may appeal.
•Inquire about the status of a registration.
•Provide change of address, telephone and bank account numbers and insurance information to avoid processing delays.
•Receive information about FEMA home inspections.
•Get other questions answered about federal disaster assistance.

FEMA advises applicants to have their nine-digit FEMA registration number on hand when they call. They also will be asked to verify their identity if they want access to their information

All disaster recovery centers are accessible and equipped with tools to accommodate disaster survivors who need disability-related communication aids. Each disaster recovery center has assistive technologies for people with disabilities. To arrange to have an ASL interpreter at the DRC when you visit, call 225-382-1739.


***

March 29, 2016

NR: 020

News Desk: 225-382-1599

News Release

Disaster Recovery Center Relocates in Bogalusa, Washington Parish, for Louisiana Survivors

BATON ROUGE, La. – The mobile disaster recovery located at the Softball Fields Parking Lot on West Ninth Street in Bogalusa, Washington Parish, will reopen at a new location Wednesday, March 30, in Bogalusa to help Louisiana flood survivors. The center is open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. Sundays until further notice.

The disaster recovery center is located at the following address:

First Pentecostal Church

14532 LA 21

Bogalusa, La.

More centers are planned to open in other parishes. Survivors may locate centers online at fema.gov/disaster-recovery-centers or by calling 800-621-3362.

Representatives from the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, U.S. Small Business Administration, volunteer groups and other agencies are at the center to answer questions about disaster assistance and low-interest disaster loans. They can also help survivors apply for federal disaster assistance.

It is not necessary to visit a center to register for and receive federal disaster assistance. If possible, survivors should register with FEMA before visiting a recovery center.

To register, go online to DisasterAssistance.gov or call the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362. Help is available in most languages and phone lines are open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week until further notice.

Disaster survivors who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability and use a TTY may call 800-462-7585 to register. Those who use 711 or Video Relay Service or require accommodations while visiting a center may call 800-621-3362. All disaster recovery centers are accessible and equipped with tools to accommodate disaster survivors who need disability-related communication aids.

Low-interest disaster loans from the SBA are available for businesses of all sizes including landlords, private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters. Disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries.

For information call the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362 or go online to www.DisasterAssistance.gov or www.fema.gov/disaster/4263.

We urge everyone to continue to use caution in areas where floodwaters remain. Monitor DOTD’s www.511la.org website for updated road closure information. Look for advisories from your local authorities and emergency managers. You can find the latest information on the state’s response at www.emergency.la.gov. GOHSEP also provides information on Facebook and Twitter. You can receive emergency alerts on most smartphones and tablets by downloading the new Alert FM App. It is free for basic service. You can also download the Louisiana Emergency Preparedness Guide and find other information at www.getagameplan.org.

Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.

FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards. Follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/femaregion6 and the FEMA Blog at http://blog.fema.gov.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. SBA helps businesses of all sizes, private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters fund repairs or rebuilding efforts and cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property. These disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations. For more information, applicants may contact SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center by calling (800) 659-2955, emailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov, or visiting SBA’s Web site at www.sba.gov/disaster. Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals may call (800)877-8339.

***

***

Where Do I Go for Behavioral Health Support?

If you or a loved one is experiencing emotional distress as a result of the March flooding incident, 24 hour help is available. Please contact the Human Services District/Authority in your area at the number provided below.

Local Governing Entities

Declared Parishes Served

Crisis Hotline

Central La Human Services District

Grant, Vernon, Winn, LaSalle, Rapides

1-800-654-1373

Imperial Calcasieu Human Services Authority

Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu

1-866-698-5304

Northwest Louisiana Human Services District

Bossier, Caddo, Webster, Claiborne, Desoto, Bienville, Natchitoches, Red River, Sabine

1-866-416-5370

Florida Parish Human Services Authority

Livingston, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, Washington

1-800-272-8367

Northeast Delta Human Services Authority

Caldwell, Madison, Morehouse, Ouachita, Richland, Union, West Carroll, Jackson

1-800-256-2522

Capital Area Human Services District

Ascension

1-225-621-8360

*

FEMA Daily Fact Sheet issued March 29, 2016

Key Issues:
Staying in touch and following up with Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) after you’ve registered can help disaster assistance get to you quicker and more efficiently.
o FEMA’s hotline includes a helpline with someone on the other end to answer your questions.
o You may need to update your contact information if you aren’t able to stay in your damaged home.
o Another reason to stay in touch: Applicants receiving temporary rental assistance will need to update their permanent housing plan. If they need continued rental assistance, further documentation will be required.
o The FEMA helpline number is 800-621-3362, which is video relay service accessible. Survivors who are deaf, hard of hearing or who have difficulty speaking may call TTY 800-462-7585. Helpline hours are 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week.

FEMA can help survivors locate temporary rental resources. Applicants may receive information on housing resources by calling FEMA’s hotline (1-800-621-3362.) or through FEMA’s housing portal at: asd.fema.gov/inter/hportal/home.htm.
o Remember: Those receiving FEMA grants for rental assistance need to save their receipts.
o If flood survivors need help from charitable or volunteer groups, they can call FEMA’s 800 number or by visiting a DRC.

Read your determination letter carefully. There may be a simple way to change “ineligible” to “eligible.” Sometimes it’s just a simple fix. The most common reason for ineligibility is survivors did not provide FEMA with a copy of a letter verifying their insurance coverage. Another reason: they didn’t sign all the documents. If you need further clarification or don’t agree with the letter, just give us a call at FEMA’s hotline. And remember that EVERY applicant has a right to an appeal.

FEMA housing inspectors will be in Louisiana as long as it takes to complete all inspections, even for homes where water is slow to recede.

Individual Assistance
Assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low interest disaster loans to cover uninsured and underinsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster.
Housing Assistance
• Grants for repairs and rebuilding and temporary rental assistance may be available to those residents with no insurance coverage and who cannot live in their homes.

Help with SBA Loans
• The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) offers low-interest disaster loans to help homeowners and renters as well as businesses of all sizes and private non-profit organizations to cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property. These disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations.
o Applications issued: 13,669
o Applications received: 1005
o Applications approved: 51
o Amount approved: $2,648,300

• Contact U.S. Small Business Administration’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center by:
o Calling (800) 659-2955
o Emailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov
o Visiting SBA’s website at www.sba.gov/disaster.
o Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals may call 800-877-8339

• The SBA and Louisiana Small Business Development Centers has opened five Business Recovery Centers (BRCs) to provide a wide range of services to businesses impacted by the severe storms, tornadoes and flooding that began March 8, 2016. Keep in mind that low-interest disaster loans are available from SBA to homeowners, renters and businesses that have experienced flooding damage.

National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP)
• When calling FEMA to register, survivors are asked if they have insurance. Remember that regular home insurance does not cover flood damage – it’s important to distinguish between homeowners insurance and National Flood insurance.
• As of March 28, 2016:
o Number of Flood Insurance Claims received: 4,486
o Amount Paid Out: $15,736,355


Registration Information
• The important thing to do now is register. Go online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or Call 1-800-621-3362 (FEMA). Disaster assistance applicants, who have a speech disability or hearing loss and use TTY, should call 1-800-462-7585 directly. For those who use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 1-800-621-3362.

Disaster Survivor Assistance
• Disaster Survivor Assistance (DSA) teams are canvassing all designated parishes.
• The teams answer questions about the types of help available, help survivors apply for state and federal assistance and update an applicant’s contact information.
• Team members wear blue FEMA shirts and have photo IDs.

**

March 23, 2016

FS005

News Desk: 225-382-1599

Fact Sheet

How FEMA Rental Assistance Helps Louisiana Flood Survivors

What is the first step survivors must take to get FEMA assistance for a temporary place to stay?

Both homeowners and renters must first apply with FEMA to determine eligibility for temporary rental assistance. They can register online at DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling toll-free 800-621-3362 from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. Multilingual operators are available. Survivors who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability and use a TTY may call 800-462-7585. Those who use 711 or Video Relay Service may call 800-621-3362.

What can Louisiana flood survivors do if their residence is uninhabitable?

Some Louisiana flood survivors may receive temporary rental assistance from FEMA to pay for a place to stay. If they are unable to find a house or apartment for rent, FEMA may consider on a case-by-case basis reimbursing survivors for temporary stays at other lodging.

How do eligible applicants receive assistance to pay for a temporary place to stay?

Survivors have two ways to receive financial help to pay for temporary rental assistance. They can choose to have the funds electronically transferred to them or receive paper checks. If the postal service cannot deliver to an affected residence then it will hold the check at the post office for survivors to pick up.

It is important for survivors to keep banking and contact information current so they receive the grant funds. They can update information online at DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 800-621-3362.

How long does temporary rental assistance last?

The first installment of temporary rental assistance funds is for two months if a FEMA inspector determines the home is uninhabitable due to damage caused by the disaster.

If the home is uninhabitable due to a power outage or is inaccessible, they may be eligible for one month of rental assistance.

What must eligible applicants do if they need temporary rental assistance for more than two months?

Eligible applicants will receive a packet from FEMA about 15 days after receiving their first temporary rental assistance grant. The packet contains instructions on how applicants must demonstrate to FEMA their continued financial need for temporary housing assistance. FEMA will continue to send the packets if an applicant continues to receive temporary housing assistance.

It is important for survivors to keep their contact information current so they receive the packet. They can update their contact information online at DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 800-621-3362.

If survivors receive housing assistance through their insurance company, can they also receive temporary rental assistance from FEMA?

By federal law FEMA cannot duplicate housing benefits if the insurance company provides assistance. However, if a survivor exhausts housing assistance funds from their insurance company, FEMA may then be able to provide temporary rental assistance.

Do survivors need to keep receipts if they receive temporary rental assistance?

Yes. Survivors must keep receipts so they can prove the FEMA temporary rental assistance grant was used for its intended purpose.

How do eligible applicants locate available rental resources?

FEMA routinely updates an online housing portal that lists available rental resources. They can access the portal online at asd.fema.gov/inter/hportal/home.htm.

Applicants may also call 800-621-3362 or visit a disaster recovery center. They may locate their closest center by visiting asd.fema.gov/inter/locator/home.htm or by calling 800-621-3362.

Survivors can learn more about centers by watching a video at the following link: http://www.fema.gov/media-library/assets/videos/79681

Applicants can also locate housing on their own that is within the temporary rental assistance grant FEMA provides to them.

What if Louisiana flood survivors have housing needs FEMA cannot meet?

FEMA may refer survivors to charitable or volunteer groups to address unmet housing needs. Survivors who have registered with FEMA can discuss charitable or volunteer referrals by calling 800-621-3362 or visiting a disaster recovery center. They may locate their closest center by visiting asd.fema.gov/inter/locator/home.htm or by calling 800-621-3362.

How can Louisiana flood survivors locate charitable or volunteer groups on their own?

Louisiana211.org lists instructions how to obtain help and resources for parts of Louisiana. Survivors can also contact their local emergency management officials. They can get contact information for their local emergency management office online at gohsep.la.gov/about/parishpa.

Do survivors have to pay taxes on this assistance?

FEMA assistance is a grant and taxes do not need to be paid.

*****

March 19, 2016

DR-4263-LA

FS003

News Desk: 940-898-5454

Fact Sheet

Dos and Don’ts for Louisiana Flood Survivors

Dos:

 Do file a claim with their insurance company.

 Do register for FEMA disaster assistance. Survivors can register online at

DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling toll-free 800-621-3362 or TTY 800-462-7585. Those who use 711 or VRS may call 800-621-3362.

 Do know that FEMA grants may help pay for a temporary place to stay, make essential repairs or replace certain damaged contents.

 Do inspect for structural damage before entering their home.

 Do report flood damage to local officials.

 Do throw away wet contents such as bedding, carpeting and furniture. These items may be a health hazard due to mold.

 Do take photographs of flood damage. The insurance company may want to see these.

 Do keep recovery-related receipts. FEMA or the insurance company may want to see these.

 Do return a completed application for a low-interest disaster loan if a FEMA registrant has been referred to the U.S. Small Business Administration. Returning the application is necessary for FEMA to consider them for certain grants.

 Do remember that FEMA grants do not need to be repaid, are not taxed and do not affect other government benefits.

Don’ts:

 Don’t submit more than one registration per household.

 Don’t wait for visits from FEMA or insurance adjusters before cleaning up flood damage and starting repairs.

 Don’t wait for an insurance settlement to register.

 Don’t worry that federal disaster assistance is taking money away from someone else. FEMA provides assistance to all eligible applicants.

 Don’t assume only homeowners can apply for help. Renters may qualify for assistance too.

We urge everyone to continue to use caution in areas where floodwaters remain. Monitor DOTD’s www.511la.org website for updated road closure information. Look for advisories from your local authorities and emergency managers. You can find the latest information on the state’s response at www.emergency.la.gov. GOHSEP also provides information on Facebook and Twitter. You can receive emergency alerts on most smartphones and tablets by downloading the new Alert FM App. It is free for basic service. You can also download the Louisiana Emergency Preparedness Guide and find other information at www.getagameplan.org. Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.

FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards. Follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/femaregion6 and the FEMA Blog at http://blog.fema.gov. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. SBA helps businesses of all sizes, private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters fund repairs or rebuilding efforts and cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property. These disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations. For more information, applicants may contact SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center by calling (800) 6592955, emailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov, or visiting SBA’s Web site at www.sba.gov/disaster. Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals may call (800)877-8339

***

30 Days Free Self-Storage for Louisiana Flood Victims in 4 More Parishes

NEW ORLEANS, La. (March 15, 2016) — U-Haul Company of Southern Louisiana is offering 30 days of free self-storage to residents of East Baton Rouge, St. Tammany, Tangipahoa and Washington Parishes, as well as surrounding areas, who have been affected by the flooding.

Much of Louisiana is still reeling from heavy rains that slammed the state last week and caused property damage or loss for many residents, creating the need for storage options where people can keep their possessions secure and dry.

“We want to help our neighbors in these communities during the recovery process,” said Patrick Allen, U-Haul Company of Southern Louisiana president. “If people need a storage unit, we’re here for them.”

U-Haul Company of Northern Louisiana extended 30 days of free self-storage in Shreveport, Bossier City and neighboring cities due to flooding from the same storms.

“A lot of flooding took place last week,” Allen added. “The rain has stopped, but some places took on more than 14 inches. People have been displaced. Some are locked out of their houses because roads are underwater. Some of the rivers and creeks are going down now, but it’s bad. It’s the worst they’ve seen here in years.”

Three U-Haul locations are participating in the 30 days of free self-storage for flood victims in Southern Louisiana. Families needing more information about the self-storage assistance should contact the following U-Haul store nearest you:

U-Haul Moving & Storage at Greenwell Springs Road 

8415 Greenwell Springs Road

Baton Rouge, LA 70814

(225) 424-5995

U-Haul Moving & Storage at Hammond Square

1915 SW Railroad Ave.

Hammond, LA 70403

(985) 345-3066

U-Haul Moving & Storage at Gause Boulevard

1685 Gause Blvd.

Slidell, LA 70458

(985) 643-7073

U-Haul stores offer needed supplies to help with storm recovery like boxes, tarps, propane and propane tanks. U-Haul urges customers to ensure their tanks are topped off since propane is good to have in the event of long-term power outages.

U-Haul is the industry leader in do-it-yourself moving and self-storage with more than 20,000 locations across the U.S. and Canada. In addition to its 30 days of free self-storage assistance, U-Haul is proud to be at the forefront of aiding communities during times of disaster as an official American Red Cross Disaster Responder.

About U-Haul

Contact:

Jeff Lockridge
Sebastien Reyes
E-mail: publicrelations@uhaul.com
Phone: 602-263-6194

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Operation Hope -  Free disaster financial recovery services 

https://www.operationhope.org/hope-coalition-america

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

March 18, 2016

State Response to Historic Flood Event, AG/FEMA Issue Scam Warning

BATON ROUGE (March 18, 2016) – The Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness (GOHSEP) continues to coordinate the state’s response to the current flood event impacting much of the state. New reports supplied by parishes indicate more than 11,000 homes have received some type of flood damage. Governor John Bel Edwards' request that President Barack Obama expand the existing federal declaration for the State of Louisiana to include another three parishes has been granted. Allen, Ascension, and Calcasieu make up the three new parishes included in the president’s declaration. 26 Louisiana parishes are now eligible for Federal assistance. More parishes may be added as part of the recovery process. Any disaster, unfortunately, results in an increased risk for scams as cleanup and repairs begin. The Louisiana Attorney General’s Office offers this advice to residents impacted by the flooding:

 

Do not donate to any charity that asks for cash or wired donations and does not provide proof your contribution would be tax-deductible. You may search the IRS website to determine which organizations are eligible to receive tax deductible contributions at https://apps.irs.gov/app/eos/.

Be wary of charities that arise immediately after a natural disaster. Learn more about a charity’s trustworthiness on the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance website at http://give.org/.

Insist on a face-to-face transaction with a rental agreement. Visit the physical location of the advertised rental property and know many con artists advertise rental property on social media sites, requiring the potential renter to wire money.

Get at least three itemized, detailed bids from licensed contractors. Make sure the contractor is licensed through the Louisiana State Licensing Board for Contractors at www.lslbc.louisiana.gov.

Always require the contractor show you proof of insurance such as workman’s compensation and general liability insurance. Call that insurer to confirm coverage.

Do not agree to a large down payment. If possible – accompany the contractor to the building supply store, pay for the materials yourself, and have materials delivered directly to jobsite.

Get a guarantee and a contract in writing. Any changes in the contract should be in writing and initialed by both parties.

Always pay contractors by check or money order and keep a receipt. Write all checks to the company, not the individual worker.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) advises all residents that no individual with a government disaster assistance agency will call or text asking for financial account information. Survivors also should keep in mind that federal and state workers never ask for or accept money and always carry identification badges. There is no fee required to apply for or to get disaster assistance.

Scam attempts can be made over the phone, by mail or email, text or in person. There seems to be no limit to the inventiveness of those wanting to commit fraud. Louisiana residents are asked to remain alert, ask questions and require photo identification when someone claims to represent a government agency. Those who question the validity of a contact or suspect fraud are encouraged to call the toll free FEMA Disaster Fraud Hotline at 866-720-5721. GOHSEP urges everyone to continue to use caution in areas where floodwaters remain. Monitor DOTD’s www.511la.org website for updated road closure information. Look for advisories from your local authorities and emergency managers.

FEMA will deploy Disaster Survivor Assistance Teams to support the registration of individuals for the Individual Assistance Grant program. Individuals may also register on the web or by phone as follows:

www.disasterassistance.gov

1-800-621-3362

TTY: 1-800-462-7585

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Flood Insurance REquirements for Disaster Survivors

Floods are the most common and costly natural disaster in the United States, and in high-risk areas, your home is more likely to be damaged by flood than by fire. The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) helps to provide a way for homeowners and renters to financially protect themselves against the repeated risks posed by flooding in high risk areas. Once a homeowner or renter receives federal financial assistance, flood insurance coverage must be maintained at the address, even if the flood-damaged building is replaced by a new one.

Requirements to Maintain Flood Insurance

The Flood Disaster Protection Act of 1973 and the National Flood Insurance Reform Act require disaster survivors located in a Special Flood Hazard Area, and who receive FEMA disaster assistance for flood-related losses, to purchase and maintain flood insurance. Individuals who have not maintained the required flood insurance coverage for their property will not, by law, be eligible for financial assistance for the repair, replacement, or restoration of their property.

Homeowners who receive federal financial assistance following a flood must maintain flood insurance coverage at the address of their home. Homeowners who sell their home are required to inform the new owners that they must maintain flood insurance coverage on the building. Often, an existing flood insurance policy can be transferred to a new owner with no lapse in coverage. Renters are only required to obtain and maintain flood insurance if they remain or move back into their flood damaged home. The requirement to maintain flood insurance does not carry forward from renter to renter. Only the renter who experienced the flooding and received federal financial assistance for flood related losses is required to maintain flood insurance while continuing to occupy their unit.

Assistance for Survivors with Lapsed Policies Households in the declared counties or parishes, who have not maintained their flood insurance policies are still urged to contact FEMA to determine if they are eligible for other forms of disaster assistance programs. Even if a household is excluded from receiving financial assistance to repair, replace, or restore their flood-damaged property, other disaster assistance may be available.

Other assistance still available may include:

? sheltering,

? temporary housing assistance (e.g., rental assistance, direct housing assistance where applicable),

? financial assistance for non-insurable real property items (e.g., wells, septic systems),

? financial assistance for child care, medical, dental, or funeral costs directly resulting from the disaster,

? financial assistance for storing personal property and moving costs beyond $1,000,

? financial assistance for other miscellaneous items (e.g., wet/dry vacuum, air purifier, dehumidifier), and

? financial assistance for transportation costs (e.g., repair/replacement of damaged vehicles).

For additional information contact FEMA at 800-621-3362, or TTY 800-462-7585; those who use 711/VRS can call 800-621-3362. To determine if you live in a high risk, special flood hazard area, visit www.floodsmart.gov, or call 1-888-379-9531.

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  • The SBA and Louisiana Small Business Development Centers has opened five Business Recovery Centers (BRCs) to provide a wide range of services to businesses impacted by the severe storms, tornadoes and flooding that began March 8, 2016. Keep in mind that low-interest disaster loans are available from SBA to homeowners, renters and businesses that have experienced flooding damage as well.
  • Washington Parish
    • The YMCA
    • Bogalusa, LA 70427
    • Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
    • Opens at 9 a.m. Thursday, March 24
    • 411 Avenue B