South Carolinians Impacted By Severe Storms and Flooding Encouraged to Register with FEMA to Be Considered for Recovery Assistance
Washington – As South Carolinians continue to respond and recover from recent severe storms and flooding, U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) announced information about registering with and applying for federal disaster assistance through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Individuals and families impacted by the storms and flooding in eleven 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 Berkeley, Calhoun, Charleston, Clarendon, Darlington, Dorchester, Florence, Georgetown, Horry, Kershaw, Lee, Lexington, Orangeburg, Richland, Sumter and Williamsburg Counties 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.
Individual assistance for impacted individuals and households available from FEMA, include:
Rental payments for temporary housing for those whose homes are unlivable. Initial assistance may be provided for up to three months for homeowners and at least one month for renters. Assistance may be extended if requested after the initial period based on a review of individual applicant requirements.
Grants for home repairs and replacement of essential household items not covered by insurance to make damaged dwellings safe, sanitary and functional.
Grants to replace personal property and help meet medical, dental, funeral, transportation and other serious disaster-related needs not covered by insurance or other federal, state and charitable aid programs.
Unemployment payments up to 26 weeks for workers who temporarily lost jobs because of the disaster and who do not qualify for state benefits, such as self-employed individuals.
Low-interest loans to cover residential losses not fully compensated by insurance. Loans available up to $200,000 for primary residence; $40,000 for personal property, including renter losses. Loans available up to $2 million for business property losses not fully compensated by insurance.
Loans up to $2 million for small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives and most private, non-profit organizations of all sizes that have suffered disaster-related cash flow problems and need funds for working capital to recover from the disaster’s adverse economic impact. This loan in combination with a property loss loan cannot exceed a total of $2 million.
Loans up to $500,000 for farmers, ranchers and aquaculture operators to cover production and property losses, excluding primary residence.
Other relief programs: Crisis counseling for those traumatized by the disaster; income tax assistance for filing casualty losses; advisory assistance for legal, veterans’ benefits and social security matters.
Individuals and business owners who sustained losses in the designated area can begin applying for assistance tomorrow by registering online atwww.DisasterAssistance.govor by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or by web enabled mobile device atm.fema.gov. Disaster assistance applicants, who have a speech disability or hearing loss and use TTY, should call 1-800-462-7585 directly; for those who use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 1-800-621-3362. The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. (local time) seven days a week until further notice.
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.