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March 14, 2012

FEMA opens in Laurel

East Bernstadt office will take applications for assistance

CORBIN — By Carl Keith Greene / Staff Writer

The Federal Emergency Management Agency set up its office at School Street in East Bernstadt in the C.D. Ward Masonic Lodge building Tuesday and those needing help may visit the agency beginning today.

The office opens at 9 a.m. and closes at 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

“I administer the disaster loans for people who are eligible,” said Marilyn Edwards, from Montgomery, Ala.

Michael Chase from Nashville, Tenn., explained that “mitigation is helping people who have been affected by the storm not to be affected in the future. That way, if they find themselves in the same situation, they won’t have the same result that happens this time.”

He said FEMA will help them to improve their homes and not have to go through the same problems in another disaster.

“We try in every way to help them maximize their assistance in anything they are entitled to,” said Jo Anne Cook from Atlanta, Ga.

Once the victims of the storm register by telephone they can then discuss their problems with the staff.

It will advise them what to do, where to go, what’s happening with their case and how to get it done.

FEMA provides assistance in getting grants for temporary housing, basic home repairs, and other needs related to the tornado.

It also provides low-interest disaster loans.

Applications must be submitted and considered for assistance.

Register by telephone at 800-621-3362. The lines are open each day from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. EDT.

Or it can be done online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov.

Registrants with hearing problems should call 800-462-7585.

Those who use 711 or Video Relay Service should call 800-621-3362.

And, those who access the web through mobile phones may register by visiting m.fema.gov and click on Apply Online for FEMA Assistance.

A telephone number where applicants can be reached by FEMA should be included in the application.

They should also list the name where the applicant lived when the tornado hit as well as the address where the applicant is staying.

A Social Security number, a general description of the damage suffered from the tornado, insurance information and a bank account information to allow direct deposit of the funds.

Those who own property should document losses with photos as well as a visit to the Property Valuation Administration office to get proof of ownership of the property if those records were destroyed.

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