FEMA swamped with requests

Published 12:00 am Sunday, October 12, 2003

Suffolk News-Herald

Nearly 200 people have visited the Federal Emergency Management Agency disaster recovery center in Suffolk since it opened last week.

The agency has received 2,129 applications for assistance in Suffolk and approved $620,000 in assistance, according to a FEMA press released issued Friday. Requests for housing assistance approved in Suffolk have totaled $415,724, with the remainder being for other needs.


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In terms of visitors, the disaster recovery center in Poquoson is the leader with 2,022, almost twice as many as the one in Gloucester, the second most-visited. Gloucester leads in FEMA money approved at nearly $3.2 million. Hampton and Poquoson are at $2.8 and $2.7 million respectively.

Throughout Virginia, nearly 67,000 applicants have registered with FEMA for assistance since Hurricane Isabel struck Sept. 18. More than $26 million in individual household assistance has been approved; 23,310 inspections have been completed; $1.25 million in low-interest disaster loans from the Small Business Administration have been approved; and $9.5 million has been approved by FEMA for debris removal, emergency protective services and permanent work.

Individuals and businesses have until Nov. 17, 2003 to apply to the Small Business Administration for funds to repair or replace disaster-damaged real or personal property. Small business owners interested in applying for Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) may do so until June 18, 2004. Completed loan applications may be returned to: U.S. Small Business Administration, P.O. Box 3309, Richmond, Va. 23228.

For more information about SBA’s disaster loan program, visit a disaster recovery center, or call the Disaster Area Office at 1-800-659-2955 or 1800-877-8339 for the hearing impaired. You can visit the SBA’s Web site at www.sba.gov/disaster.

The FEMA disaster recovery center in Suffolk is located at the National Guard Armory on Godwin Boulevard.