FEMA homeowner assistance program offers up to $35K grant

THE Federal Emergency Management Agency can provide up to $34,900 in individual/homeowner assistance grant, according to Michael Lewis, FEMA Saipan Disaster Recovery Center deputy group supervisor.

Lewis said the maximum grant amount can pay for home repair or replacement, rental assistance, transportation, personal property, medical or dental expenses.

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“It just depends on the eligibility,” said Lewis, adding that the FEMA national processing center determines an applicant’s eligibility for any kind of assistance.

But Paul Corah, FEMA public information officer, said  although the maximum grant amount is $34,900, “most people…only receive a fraction of that amount.”

He added that for individual assistance, the average FEMA grant is much lower.

Still, Lewis encourages all those affected by Typhoon Yutu to register. “Register, register, register. They should register and then we can assist them with the next steps.”

At the Disaster Recovery Center or DRC, FEMA personnel interview applicants and collect data to help them register.

After the registration, an inspector will inspect the applicant’s home and assess the damage. “That information is processed to determine if they are eligible,” Lewis said.

 DRC provides residents an opportunity to meet face-to-face with representatives from FEMA and the U.S. Small Business Administration who can answer questions about temporary housing, home repairs, replacement of damaged personal property, home and business recovery funding, and other disaster-related needs.

The last day to file an application for assistance is Jan. 27, 2019.

Lewis said an average of 50-60 individuals visit the Saipan DRC located at the Joeten-Kiyu Public Library. It will be open on Nov. 14 to 15 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. It was closed on Tuesday, Nov. 13, for the CNMI general elections.

On Nov. 16, the Saipan DRC will move to the multi-purpose center.

Source: Marianas Variety :

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