Individuals, Businesses, and Non-profits in Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens, and Staten Island Affected by Hurricane Irene May Be Eligible for Federal Disaster Aid
The New York City Office of Emergency Management today notified New Yorkers that State and federal Disaster Recovery Centers (DRC) are set to open Monday, September 26, 2011 in Brooklyn, the Bronx, Queens, and Staten Island. Following Hurricane Irene, the federal government declared the four counties eligible to receive federal disaster aid for individuals, businesses, and non-profits.
The DRCs will be staffed by FEMA disaster recovery specialists who can provide information and answer questions about hurricane-related assistance. The centers will be open Monday – Friday, 9 AM to 5 PM from September 26, 2011 through October 7, 2011 at the following locations:
Brooklyn College, 2900 Bedford Avenue, Brooklyn, NY
Bronx Borough Hall, 851 Grand Concourse, Bronx, NY
Dept. of Finance-Financial Business Center, 144-06 94th Street, Jamaica, NY
Staten Island Armory, 321 Manor Road, Staten Island, NY
FEMA and New York State strongly recommend New Yorkers register with FEMA before visiting a DRC:
· To register by phone, call the FEMA registration line at 800-621-3362.
· For those with speech or hearing disabilities, use the TTY number, 800-462-7585.
Registrants should have the following information ready:
· the address of the damaged property
· names of those living in the household
· a general description of the damage
· the Social Security Account number of any family member living in the home
· the extent of insurance coverage
· other information needed to expedite the process
U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) specialists will also be present at the DRC to explain the low-interest loan packages available to individuals, non-profits, and businesses of any size. These loans are for the repair or replacement of real estate and/or personal property damaged by the storm and related flooding. People who register with FEMA may be sent a loan application from the SBA. No one is obligated to take out a loan. Applicants have six months after approval to decide whether to accept the loan.
FEMA's temporary housing assistance and grants for transportation, medical and dental, and funeral expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. Applicants who receive SBA loan applications must submit them to SBA to be eligible for FEMA assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses.
New York State will also provide the following services at the DRCs:
· information about state disaster aid and help for people who are unemployed or displaced from their job as a result of Irene
· information about state-funded programs for senior citizens
· access to forms and services pertaining to motor-vehicle issues
· coordination and assistance with any needs for daycare services
· access to MyBenefits pre-screening tool
In addition, New York City will provide mental health services and assistance for individuals with long-term housing or other social service needs.