Disaster Recovery Centers transitioning to SBA Disaster Loan Outreach Centers

Disaster recovery centers in Louisville and Tupelo will close at 6 p.m. Wednesday, June 11, and will reopen at 8 a.m. Thursday, June 12, as disaster loan outreach centers to continue serving disaster survivors.
Representatives from the U.S. Small Business Administration will be available at the centers to assist survivors in completing their low-interest disaster loan applications and answer questions about the loan program. Staff from the Federal Emergency Management Agency will remain at the centers to assist survivors with disaster-related concerns.

The centers will remain at the following locations:

Lee County
Old Tupelo Water and Light
320 Court St.
Tupelo, MS 38804

Winston County
Georgia Pacific
826 S. Church Ave.
Louisville, MS 39339

Hours for the disaster loan outreach centers will be 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday until further notice. The centers will be closed Saturdays and Sundays.

Low-interest disaster loans from SBA are the largest source of federal recovery funding for homeowners, renters and business owners. They may provide financial assistance for repairing or rebuilding a home or replacing personal property, such as furniture, clothing and vehicles.
Applying for SBA low-interest disaster loans is part of the FEMA grant process. Survivors who are contacted by SBA after registering with FEMA should complete the application to keep their recovery process moving. Filing the loan application does not obligate people to accept an SBA loan. However, failure to complete and submit the home disaster loan application may stop the FEMA grant process. Homeowners and renters who submit an SBA application and are declined a loan may be considered for certain other FEMA grants that do not have to be paid back and could include assistance for disaster-related car repairs, clothing, household items and other expenses.
Homeowners, renters or business owners who sustained storm-related damages have until Monday, June 30, to apply for a low-interest SBA disaster loan. June 30 is also the deadline to register with FEMA.
For more information, homeowners, renters and businesses may call the SBA at 800-659-2955 (TTY 800-877-8339), send an email to DisasterCustomerService@sba.gov or visit SBA.gov/Disaster. Survivors can complete disaster loan applications online at https://DisasterLoan.SBA.gov/ELA.
Survivors who have not yet registered with FEMA can do so online at DisasterAssistance.gov, with a mobile device at m.FEMA.gov or by calling the FEMA helpline at 800-621-FEMA (3362.) Survivors who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability can call TTY 800-462-7585.
For more information on Mississippi disaster recovery, go to fema.gov/disaster/4175. Visit the MEMA site at msema.org or on Facebook at facebook.com/msemaorg.

There are Many Good Reasons to Apply for SBA Low-interest Disaster Loans

Mississippi tornado survivors who fail to return completed Small Business Administration low-interest disaster loan applications may be saying no to federal assistance.
Sometimes survivors think SBA disaster loans are only for businesses. Some may be counting on a future insurance settlement to cover all the costs of rebuilding. Often they don’t want a disaster loan or fear they cannot afford one. Or maybe they simply need assistance completing the SBA disaster loan application.
SBA offers disaster loans to homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes and private nonprofit organizations for physical damage from the April 28 through May 3 severe storms, tornadoes and flooding in the following Mississippi counties: Itawamba, Jones, Leake, Lee, Lowndes, Madison, Montgomery, Rankin, Simpson, Warren, Wayne and Winston.
Economic injury disaster loans are available to provide working capital to eligible small businesses and non-profit organizations located in the counties listed above and the adjacent counties.
There are good reasons for FEMA applicants who have been contacted by SBA to submit a completed disaster loan application before the June 30, 2014, deadline.

Some of the top reasons for submitting an SBA application include:

  • A future insurance settlement may fall short. Survivors may find out they are underinsured for the amount of work it takes to repair or replace a damaged home. An SBA low-interest loan can cover the uninsured costs. By submitting the loan application, survivors may have loan money available when it is needed. SBA can approve a loan for the repair or replacement of a home up to $200,000. The loan balance will be reduced by a survivor’s insurance settlement. However, the opportunity for an SBA disaster loan may be lost if they wait until after the application deadline.
  • SBA can help renters repair or replace disaster damaged personal property. Renters, as well as homeowners, may borrow up to $40,000 to repair or replace clothing, furniture, appliances and damaged vehicles.
  • By submitting an SBA loan application, survivors keep the full range of disaster assistance available as an option. SBA may refer applicants who do not qualify for a home loan to FEMA for grants to replace essential household items, replace or repair a damaged vehicle, cover medical, dental and funeral expenses and other serious disaster-related needs. But if survivors do not submit their disaster loan applications, the assistance process may stop. Survivors are not required to accept a loan offer.

For more information, homeowners, renters and businesses may call the SBA at 800-659-2955 (TTY 800-877-8339), send an email to DisasterCustomerService@sba.gov or visit SBA.gov/Disaster. Survivors can complete disaster loan applications online at https://DisasterLoan.SBA.gov/ELA.
Survivors can visit any of the three disaster recovery centers open in Mississippi to sit down and talk with an SBA representative in person. Disaster recovery center locations can be found by visiting FEMA.gov/DRCLocator or by calling the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362 (TTY 800-462-7585.)

Federal Help May be available for vehicles damaged

Anyone who had a car damaged or destroyed by the April 28 through May 3 storms in any of the 12 Mississippi counties designated for FEMA Individual Assistance may be eligible for federal help. The deadline to register for FEMA assistance is Monday, June 30, 2014.
Those who may be eligible include not just residents of the designated counties, but also those who were working or visiting those areas and had disaster-related damage to their vehicle during the tornadoes.
The damaged vehicle must have complied with applicable state laws regarding title, vehicle registration and insurance requirements at the time of the damage.
Only those who maintain at least liability insurance will be considered to receive federal disaster assistance to repair or replace their vehicle. Liability coverage is the minimum insurance requirement for Mississippi drivers. Liability insurance policies do not cover storm-related damage. Survivors who register must submit proof to FEMA that they maintain liability coverage to be considered for federal disaster assistance to repair or replace their car.
Survivors who have a comprehensive policy should first file a claim with their insurance company. Comprehensive policies usually pay for storm-related damage to a car. However, federal disaster assistance may help fill in the gaps for those whose comprehensive insurance coverage does not pay for any or all storm-related damage costs.
Survivors need to return a completed U.S. Small Business Administration disaster-loan application. After registering with FEMA, the SBA will contact many survivors concerning disaster loan applications. It’s important for survivors to submit their application. Homeowners and renters may be eligible to borrow up to $40,000 to repair or replace personal property, including automobiles damaged or destroyed in the disaster.
FEMA grants to repair or replace a vehicle must clear the SBA disaster loan process. A survivor may receive a grant from FEMA to repair or replace their car if insurance is insufficient and they were declined for an SBA home loan. Grants do not need to be repaid.
Keep documents. Federal disaster assistance is reimbursed to survivors only if their car had damage during the severe storms, tornadoes and flooding April 28 to May 3. Survivors must submit an itemized document that shows damage to the car is storm-related and a receipt, estimate or verifiable bill of the repair or replacement costs.
FEMA officials advise anyone whose vehicle was damaged during the tornadoes to register for assistance. Survivors who sustained damage to their property, including vehicles, in the following Mississippi counties should register: Itawamba, Jones, Leake, Lee, Lowndes, Madison, Montgomery, Rankin, Simpson, Warren, Wayne and Winston.

FEMA Individual Assistance as of 6/09/14

Total registrations: 5,001 individual households
Daily registrations: 37
Individuals and Household program assistance approved: $4.7 million (4,768,590.23)
Visits to Disaster Recovery Centers: 4,616 as COB 6/9/14

Total Registrations for Individual Assistance as of COB 06/09/14 by designated county:

Itawamba County: 129
Jones County: 271
Leake County: 26
Lee County: 1,335
Lowndes County: 953
Madison County: 71
Montgomery: 4
Rankin County: 476
Simpson County: 22
Warren County: 55
Wayne County: 371
Winston County: 1,147

Survivors with Ongoing Housing Needs Should Stay in Touch with FEMA

The Federal Emergency Management Agency understands that some Mississippi disaster survivors may need additional temporary rental assistance to help them achieve their permanent housing goals.
All applicants who received temporary rental assistance from FEMA were mailed a “Declaration for Continuing Need for Rental Assistance” letter.
This form is mailed 15 days after applicants receive their initial rental assistance grant and explains how to request additional temporary rental assistance from FEMA.
To receive additional temporary rental assistance as quickly as possible, applicants must:

  • Complete the form with all the applicable information and mail it back to FEMA at the address printed on the form.
  • Applicants will need to provide information of both pre-disaster and current income and expenses that are applicable to their households, including copies of recent pay stubs to verify income.
  • They also must provide a copy of their lease and the name and phone number of their landlord.
  • Applicants who don’t have the form should contact FEMA’s toll-free Help Line 800-621-3362 (TTY 462-7585.)

FEMA expects all families who receive temporary rental assistance to return to their damaged home when it is repaired or to locate and occupy affordable housing without FEMA rental assistance at their earliest opportunity.
However, FEMA also recognizes this is a difficult time for survivors and that some families need additional temporary assistance for their recovery.

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.
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). If you have a speech disability or hearing loss and use a TTY, call 800-462-7585 directly; if you use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 800-621-3362.
FEMA’s temporary housing assistance and grants for public transportation expenses, medical and dental expenses, and funeral and burial expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. However, applicants who receive SBA loan applications must submit them to SBA loan officers to be eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses.