Storm victims to receive state assistance

Monday, June 16, 2003

Governor Mike Huckabee has activated disaster recovery services through the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management (ADEM) and the Arkansas Department of Human Services (DHS) to assist homeowners in counties with uninsured losses from tornadoes, severe thunderstorms and flooding that struck the state beginning May 16.

Counties eligible for assistance are: Cleburne, Conway, Craighead, Crittenden, Cross, Faulkner, Jackson, Lonoke, Perry, Poinsett, St. Francis, Woodruff, and White. In order to expedite assistance, Arkansans with uninsured damages are asked to apply for state assistance as soon as possible.

At this time the request for federal individual assistance has not been approved. Additional information will be submitted to FEMA to strengthen the request and applicants will be told if federal assistance becomes available. A federal disaster declaration was granted to assist in repairing infrastructure damaged by the storms (roads, bridges, etc.)

Temporary Housing Assistance Grants, for victims whose primary residences were destroyed or are uninhabitable as a result of the storms, are available through ADEM. The program offers one month of assistance for pre-disaster renters and up to three months for pre-disaster homeowners. If the victim has a homeowner's policy and their policy allows for Additional Living Expenses (ALE), they are ineligible for state assistance until the ALE is depleted. The state will assess the individual's needs and Temporary Housing Assistance will be offered to those individuals who are eligible.

Applications for Temporary Housing Assistance Grants will be taken by ADEM at 1-877-828-3362, from 8 a.m. Monday, June 9, through 4 p.m. Friday, June 20. Calls will not be taken on weekends.

The Individual and Family Grant Program, (IFG) administered by DHS, assists disaster victims with serious needs or necessary expenses that were incurred as a result of the disaster. Eligible categories concerning uninsured losses include: assisting in repair or replacement of primary residence, repair/replacement of personal property, essential transportation, funeral expenses, and medical expenses.

Disaster victims may apply for the IFG Program by making an appointment by telephone with their county's Department of Human Services office. The number for each DHS office can be obtained by calling ADEM. Applications will be taken from 8 a.m. Monday, June 9, through 4 p.m. Friday, June 20. Calls will not be taken on weekends.

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