Senator Scott Encourages Residents to Stay Vigilant as Flooding Continues in Several Communities
Sumter, SC – As the Lowcountry of South Carolina braces for more flooding tomorrow and this weekend, U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) today encouraged residents along the coast to stay aware of their surroundings.In the next 8-12 hours, Georgetown will begin to see rising water along the Pee Dee and Black Rivers, and Pawley’s Island, Jamestown and areas below Givhans Ferry are preparing for serious flooding. Multiple communities along rivers across the state, including the Santee, Edisto and Ashley rivers, are also in danger of flooding. Flooding in parts of the Lowcountry is expected to last for up to 12 days.Residents with storm and flood-related questions can call the South Carolina Emergency Management Division’s 24-hour Public Information Phone System at 1-866-246-0133 or retrieve information online at www.scemd.org.
At stops today in Sumter, S.C. and Manning, S.C., Senator Scott also highlighted various recovery assistance options for South Carolina communities. Individuals and households impacted flooding in sixteen counties can now apply online at www.DisasterAssistance.govor by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362).
Individual Assistance (IA) is currently available for individuals and households in Berkley, Calhoun, Charleston, Clarendon, Dorchester, Darlington, Florence, Georgetown, Horry, Lee, Lexington, Kershaw, Orangeburg, Richland, Sumter and Williamsburg that were impacted by severe storms and flooding on October 1, 2015 and onward. Individuals and Households in impacted counties that have yet to be declared eligible by the Obama Administration for assistance are still encouraged to begin the process of registering with FEMA for possible future relief. The state and federal government continue to assess damage in additional counties.
Public Assistance (PA) is currently available for State, Tribal and local governments, and certain types of nonprofit organizations to provide assistance foremergency work and the repair or replacement of disaster-damaged facilities in Berkeley, Charleston, Clarendon, Dorchester, Georgetown, Horry, Lexington, Orangeburg, Richland, Sumter, and Williamsburg Counties.
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)– This is the Federal agency primarily tasked with assisting in disaster. Its main Individual Assistance Program is the Individual and Households Program (IHP). The maximum IHP award during the Federal fiscal year is $33,000. This award is not dependent on the ability to repay a loan.
- Housing Assistance: Those who are displaced from their primary residence and are uninsured or under-insured may be eligible for assistance. This assistance includes temporary housing, housing repair, housing replacement, and in rare instances permanent and semi-permanent housing.
- Other Needs Assistance: This may be used for medical, dental, and funeral expenses caused by the disaster. Personal property, transportation, and moving and storage assistance may also be eligible.
- Disaster Legal Services: Low-income disaster survivors that have disaster-related legal needs including contractor issues, insurance claims, replacing legal documents, and landlord/tenant issues.
- Disaster Unemployment Assistance: Unemployment and re-employment assistance is available to individuals who lost their business or job due to the disaster.
- Crisis Counseling Assistance: A wide range of services are available to assist individuals and communities in recovering from disasters.
Small Business Administration (SBA)– In federally declared disasters, as well as in non-federally declared disasters that meet certain thresholds, the SBA can provide loans to individuals and businesses that have sustained disaster-related property or equipment damage, who have suffered a loss of income, or who need additional funding to cover operating expenses while working to reopen.
- Home Physical Disaster Loans: Homeowners and renters may apply for this loan to repair or replace real estate and/or personal property damaged by a disaster.
- Business Physical Disaster Loans: Businesses of any size may apply for this loan to repair or replace property owned by the business that was damaged by a disaster.
- Economic Injury Disaster Loans: Working capital loans for small businesses, small agriculture cooperatives, and many non-profit organizations affected by disaster to meet their financial obligations. These loans assist through the disaster recovery period.
United States Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency (USDA FSA)- The USDA FSA provides assistance in the event of crop loss, livestock loss, or damage to farm property resulting from drought, flood, fire, freeze, tornadoes, pest infestation, and other emergencies.
Internal Revenue Service (IRS)-After a disaster, the IRS is sometimes able to provide tax relief, adjustments, filing deadline extensions, and refunds to help taxpayers and businesses recover financially from the impact of a disaster.
Immediately following the storms and flooding, when the federal government approved South Carolina’s request for a Major Disaster Declaration, Senator Scott created a special page on his Senate website (scott.senate.gov/FEMA) with information for individuals and families about the FEMA process. This page will continue to be updated as additional information becomes available. Caseworkers in all of his state offices are also available to assist residents with issues that may arise after submitting their application.