Government recovery services continue St Johns County

SPECIAL OFFER FOR HISTORIC CITY NEWS READERS

LINDA STOUGHTON
LINDA STOUGHTON
The Disaster Recovery Center reported to Historic City News that they are open in St. Johns County to help survivors of Hurricane Matthew’s severe storms and flooding that began affecting the state October 3rd.

The location of the center is:

St. Johns County Wind Mitigation Building
3111 Agricultural Center Drive
St. Augustine, FL 32092

Open Monday – Saturday 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Closed Sundays

Disaster Recovery Centers, like the one sponsored by Senator Marco Rubio and Mayor Nancy Shaver last week, serve as one-stop shops for eligible storm survivors seeking one-on-one help.

Representatives from the Florida Division of Emergency Management, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Small Business Administration and various state agencies will be at the center to answer questions.

There is a mobile app available for smartphones that allows survivors to:

  • Apply for disaster assistance
  • Get directions to the nearest Disaster Recovery Center
  • Get weather alerts
  • Subscribe to disaster safety tips

Many services available at disaster recovery centers are also available by calling the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362.

Disaster assistance may include grants to help homeowners and renters pay for temporary housing, essential home repairs, personal property replacement, and other serious disaster-related needs not covered by insurance.


BUSINESSES:

Businesses and nonprofits can apply to the Small Business Administration for loans up to $2 million to repair or replace disaster damaged real estate, machinery, equipment, inventory, and other business assets. Loans for working capital, known as Economic Injury Disaster Loans, are available even if the business did not suffer any physical damage.

SBA offers low-interest disaster loans for businesses of all sizes, homeowners, renters, and certain private non-profit organizations. SBA disaster loans may cover repairs, rebuilding, as well as the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged real estate and personal property.

For more information about SBA loans, call SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955, email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov, or visit http://www.sba.gov/disaster. TTY users may call 800-877-8339. Applicants may also apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.


INDIVIDUALS:

Homeowners can apply for up to $200,000 to repair or replace disaster damaged real estate. Homeowners and renters can apply for up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged personal property including automobiles.

Interest rates are as low as 4 percent for businesses, 2.625 percent for private nonprofit organizations, and 1.563 percent for homeowners and renters, with terms up to 30 years. The SBA customizes loan amounts and terms based on each applicant’s circumstances.

Applicants may be eligible for a loan amount increase up to 20 percent of their physical damages, as verified by the SBA for mitigation purposes. Eligible mitigation improvements may now include a safe room or storm shelter to help protect property and occupants from future damage caused by a similar disaster.

The SBA offers several ways to apply for a disaster loan: online application via SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela; or download an application from www.sba.gov/disaster. For information or to request application forms, call the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or send an email to disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.


Those who have registered with their county emergency management office, the American Red Cross, or other community organizations, are reminded to also register with FEMA.

FEMA encourages survivors to register as soon as possible. The filing deadline to submit applications for physical property damage is December 16, 2016. The deadline for economic injury applications is July 17, 2017.

Survivors with questions regarding the application or the appeals process, or who need to register for assistance, may visit online at DisasterAssistance.gov or by phone (voice, 711 or relay service) at 800-621-3362. (TTY users should call 800-462-7585.) The toll-free lines are open 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. seven days a week.

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