Volusia County Hurricane Matthew Cost Recovery Updates
Volusia County: Residents who have questions or need storm-related information can call Volusia County Emergency Management at 386-258-4088.
FEMA and SBA Assistance update (Dec. 20 at 3:30 p.m.)
FEMA and SBA Assistance update (Dec. 14, 2016 at 4 p.m.)
Although the registration deadline for Hurricane Matthew ends Dec. 16, residents are reminded that FEMA and the SBA will still be available to answer questions and provide assistance to applicants with unmet needs or needs not met by insurance settlements.
While not everyone who applies for federal disaster assistance will qualify for aid, the appeals process will ensure you receive all the federal disaster aid for which you are legally eligible. An applicant has 60 daysfrom the date on FEMA’s determination letter to file an appeal. The determination letter describes the amount and type of assistance being offered. A determination letter may state the application is missing information such as verification of occupancy of the damaged property, documentation of disaster damage, proof of identity, and what is covered under an insurance policy.
If addresses or phone numbers change, they should be updated with FEMA as soon as possible. Missing or erroneous information could result in delays in getting a home inspection or receiving assistance.
If you disagree with FEMA’s decision or have questions about the appeals process, call the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362 (voice/711/VRS-Video Relay Service) (TTY: 800-462-7585). Multilingual operators are available (press 2 for Spanish). The toll-free lines are open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. seven days a week until further notice.
More information on the FEMA appeals process can be found in the FEMA booklet, “Help after a Disaster: Applicant’s Guide to the Individuals & Households Program.” This free booklet is available in numerous languages for download at fema.gov/help-after-disaster.
The SBA is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property, offering low-interest disaster assistance loans to businesses of all sizes, private nonprofit organizations, homeowners and renters. SBA disaster loans are available to businesses of all sizes, most private non-profit organizations, and homeowners and renters to cover uninsured losses from the disaster. 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. Loan terms can be up to 30 years.
To date, the SBA has approved 493 loans for $11,199,000 for residences and businesses in Volusia County. Residents should be aware if they have an SBA loan and receive a "substantial damage letter" from their local authorities, the SBA can usually finance any shortfall of funds after insurance and FEMA grants to pay for code required upgrades. This includes the cost to elevate structures damaged by Hurricane Matthew.
The deadline to file an SBA disaster loan application for physical damage is Dec. 16.
Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) on SBA’s secure website, https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Disaster loan information and application forms may also be obtained by calling the SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Loan applications can be downloaded from www.sba.gov/disaster. Completed applications can be returned to a recovery center or mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.
The filing deadline to return applications for physical property damage is Dec. 16. The deadline to return economic injury applications is July 17.
FEMA Other Needs Assistance (ONA) grants may cover uninsured losses for furniture, appliances and other personal property, even vehicles. Survivors may not be considered for this type of assistance unless they have completed and returned an SBA loan application. Some types of ONA — medical, dental and funeral expenses — are not SBA dependent, and completing the loan application is not required.
To be considered for all forms of disaster assistance, applicants should register with FEMA online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by mobile device at m.fema.gov. If online or mobile access is unavailable, applicants should call the FEMA toll-free helpline at 800-621-3362. Those who use 711-Relay or Video Relay Services should call 800-621-3362 (800-462-7585 TTY).
If residents are planning to seek FEMA assistance, they are encouraged to register with FEMA and write down their nine-digit number. Once the registration deadline passes, if residents have continuing needs or need to provide FEMA with additional information, they can call back and provide their nine-digit number to speak with someone about their needs/situation.
For FEMA assistance, it will take about 15 minutes to apply, but before applicants call, go online or visit the DRC, they should gather the following basic information to speed the process:
· Social Security number
· Telephone number
· Address of the damaged property
· Current mailing address
· Brief description of disaster-related damages and losses
· Insurance information
· Bank account address and information
Applying is the first step toward getting Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) disaster assistance. FEMA can help eligible applicants pay for uninsured or under-insured home repairs, temporary housing, personal property and other serious disaster-related needs through its grant programs. Applying through FEMA is also the first step to apply for loans through the Small Business Administration. U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) low-interest disaster loans are the primary source of federal assistance to rebuild disaster-damaged private property. SBA offers low-interest disaster loans to homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes, and certain private nonprofit organizations.
As families around Volusia County continue to recover from Hurricane Matthew, it’s important to remember that children are particularly vulnerable to the stress that follows a disaster. Their symptoms may linger much longer than in adults, according to mental health experts. Children also react to how adults behave in stressful situations, so it’s important for parents and caregivers to look after their own mental health. Parents and other caregivers should be alert to signs of stress-related problems and learn how to deal with their children’s fears and unusual behavior. For more information, visit https://www.ready.gov/kids/parents/coping.
Business Disaster Recovery Center: SBA representatives will be available to meet with businesses and answer questions about SBA’s disaster loan program, help them complete their SBA disaster loan application, and accept completed applications. The Business Disaster Recovery Center is co-located at the Disaster Recovery Center in Daytona Beach. Businesses not able to visit the DRC should call the SBA Customer Service Center from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday toll-free at 800-659-2955 for information and assistance or visit the SBA website at www.sba.gov/services/disasterassistance. Other agencies at the Business Disaster Recovery Center include CareerSource, Small Business Development Center and the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity.
County assistance available for hurricane damage
Volusia County residents who need insurance deductible payments or home repairs due to damage caused by Hurricane Matthew may apply for a grant through the county’s Community Assistance Division.
Residents may complete applications and speak with Community Assistance staff from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 12 through 16 at the Florida Department of Health, 1845 Holsonback Drive, Daytona Beach. After Dec. 16, applications will still be available online at www.volusia.org/housing and in the Volusia County Community Assistance office, 110 Rich Ave., DeLand, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
The disaster recovery program is funded by Volusia County’s State Housing Initiatives Partnership program to assist residents who own and occupy their home and have already applied for FEMA assistance. If residents have homeowners insurance, they must have already filed a claim. Applicants must live in Volusia County, but not within the city limits of Deltona or Daytona Beach, due to grant restrictions. Residents applying for assistance for manufactured homes are eligible only if the home was constructed after June 1994 and the resident owns the land where the home is located. Applicants’ household income may not exceed 120 percent of the area median income.
Completed applications may be dropped off in person or mailed to Volusia County Community Assistance, 110 W. Rich Ave., DeLand, FL 32720. Residents who are disabled and need a reasonable accommodation to apply for this program may contact Lori Brown at 386-736-5955 or email@example.com.
Volusia County residents who lost their jobs due to severe storms and flooding caused by Hurricane Matthew may be entitled to federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance.
Applicants must file a request for disaster benefits by Nov. 18. Applicants must be legal U.S. residents and must have been working in or living in Flagler, St. John, Volusia or Putnam counties.
The individual must: (1) have become unemployed as a direct result of the disaster or (2) be unable to reach the place of employment as a direct result of the disaster or (3) have been scheduled to begin work and does not have a job or is unable to reach the job as a direct result of the disaster or (4) have become the major support for a household because the head of the household has died as a direct result of the disaster or (5) be unable to work because of an injury caused directly by the disaster.
To file a Disaster Unemployment claim, go to https://connect.myflorida.com or call 800-681-8102.
Disaster distress helpline
This toll-free, multilingual and confidential crisis support service is available to all residents in the United States and its territories. Stress, anxiety and other depression-like symptoms are common reactions after a disaster.
FREE LEGAL ASSISTANCE FOR HURRICANE MATTHEW VICTIMS
A toll-free legal aid hotline is now available for victims of Hurricane Matthew, Hurricane Hermine and the resultant flooding in Florida. The service, which allows callers to request the assistance of a lawyer, is a partnership between The Florida Bar, The Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division, the American Bar Association Young Lawyers Division and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Low-income survivors facing legal issues may call 866-550-2929, the assistance hotline activated by the Florida Bar and the Florida Bar Young Lawyers Division. Callers should explain they are seeking storm-related legal assistance and should identify the county in which they are located. Survivors who qualify for assistance will be matched with Florida lawyers who have volunteered to provide free legal help.
Examples of legal assistance available include:
The hotline is available 24/7, and callers can leave a message any time. Individuals who qualify for assistance will be matched with Florida lawyers who have volunteered to provide free, limited legal help. Survivors should be aware that there are some limitations on disaster legal services. For example, assistance is not available for cases that will produce a fee (i.e., those cases where fees are paid as part of a settlement by the court). Such cases are referred to a lawyer referral service.
Volunteers and donations
Community Organizations Active In Disasters (COAD) is coordinating volunteers and donations through the Emergency Operations Center. For more information, call the United Way at 2-1-1. COAD is a multi-agency group that assists local governments in organizing and deploying volunteers and resources in response to the unmet needs of local disaster survivors. Membership is open to individuals, faith-based groups, government agencies, civic clubs, volunteer organizations, social service agencies, business people and emergency management personnel.
Veterans who incurred charges for emergent healthcare given by outside providers are encouraged to seek reimbursement of these charges. Volusia County Veterans Services offices are prepared to assist in filing claims for reimbursement to the Veterans Affairs medical center. Homeless veterans who may have lost essential living items, such as sleeping gear, may seek replacement of these items through Volusia County Veterans Services offices. Veterans who may have been rendered homeless due to a temporary or permanent loss of structure are also encouraged to seek assistance through Volusia County Veterans Services or any Veterans Affairs healthcare facility. For more information, please call 386-254-4646 or 386-740-5102 or visit www.volusia.org/veterans.