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NEW YORK – At the request of the State of New York, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved a 15-day extension for Hurricane Sandy survivors to apply for disaster assistance.

New York survivors of Superstorm Sandy now have until April 13 to register with FEMA and to return their disaster loan applications to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA loan applications).

Register online at http://www.DisasterAssistance.gov or via smartphone or tablet at m.fema.gov. Or call the FEMA helpline 800-621-3362 (Voice, 7-1-1/Relay) or (TTY) 800-462-7585. The helpline is available 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. EDT, seven days a week.

Hurricane Sandy survivors should keep all options open for assistance in their recovery.  Registering with FEMA is a critical step.

Survivors who have delayed registration for any reason should apply for potential assistance. Registering with FEMA opens the possibility of disaster assistance provided by FEMA and its federal partner, the SBA.

New York City and the State of New York have developed plans for using federal funds to help homeowners, small businesses and communities impacted by three storms: Sandy, Irene and Lee. Those plans are being reviewed by HUD. Registration with FEMA might lead to eligibility for future grants or assistance, regardless of funding administered by New York City or the State of New York.

Survivors who register and receive an SBA low-interest disaster loan application should return the application. It might lead to additional FEMA assistance.

FEMA assistance can include:

  • Rental assistance: Temporary rental assistance is provided by FEMA to assist homeowners until damaged homes can be repaired or rebuilt and to help renters until they can return to former rentals or relocate to a new residence.
  • Home Repair: Grants are available to homeowners to repair disaster-related damage that is not covered by insurance. The goal is to make the home safe, sanitary and functional.
  • Other Needs: Grants are available for necessary expenses and serious needs caused by the disaster. This includes medical, dental, funeral, personal property, transportation, moving and storage and other expenses authorized by law.

Applying for an SBA disaster loan

There’s no need to wait for an insurance settlement to apply for an SBA disaster loan, which may help if applicants later find they are underinsured.

Homeowners may be eligible for low-interest loans up to $200,000 to repair or replace their storm-damaged home. Homeowners and renters may be eligible for up to $40,000 to replace personal property. Businesses and private nonprofit organizations may be eligible to borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace storm-damaged property.

To apply for a low-interest SBA disaster loan, go to https://DisasterLoan.SBA.gov/ELA. Survivors may also visit a Disaster Loan Outreach Center or a Business Recovery Center. To locate the nearest center, visit FEMA.gov/disaster-recovery-centers or text “DRC” and your Zip Code to 43362.

For assistance, call the SBA Disaster Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955

(TTY 800-877-8339) or send an email to DisasterCustomerService@sba.gov.

For more information on New York’s disaster recovery, visit www.fema.gov/SandyNY, www.twitter.com/FEMASandy, www.facebook.com/FEMASandy and www.fema.gov/blog.

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FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

 Recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.

FEMA’s temporary housing assistance and grants for public transportation expenses, medical and dental expenses, and funeral and burial expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. However, applicants who receive SBA loan applications must submit them to SBA loan officers to be eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses.

 

New York renters may be eligible for additional grants from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. To find out if renters qualify, they must complete and submit their disaster loan application from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

No one has to accept an SBA disaster loan. But information provided on that loan application may be used to help determine eligibility for a variety of FEMA programs that can help renters rebuild their lives.

“Renters are tightly woven into the fabric of New York and their recovery is crucial to the city’s recovery,” said Michael F. Byrne, FEMA’s federal coordinating officer in New York. “Many  renters have registered with FEMA and many of them are receiving help now.”

Renters, like homeowners, may be eligible for FEMA’s Other Needs Assistance, designed to help survivors with uninsured or underinsured necessary expenses and serious needs caused by the disaster. It’s important for survivors to understand that they must complete and return their SBA loan application in order to be eligible for Other Needs Assistance grants.

These grants can be used for:

  • Replacement or repair of necessary personal property lost or damaged in the disaster, household items such as room furnishings or appliances, and tools and equipment required by the self-employed for their jobs
  • Primary vehicles and approved second vehicles damaged by the disaster
  • Disaster-related medical and dental expenses
  • Disaster-related funeral and burial expenses

Renters who do want an SBA loan may be eligible for a loan up to $40,000 for personal property losses.

The deadline to apply for FEMA assistance or an SBA disaster loan is March 29, 2013.

A simple way to complete the application is online, using the SBA’s electronic loan application. Go to https://DisasterLoan.SBA.gov/ELA. More information is available by calling the SBA Disaster Customer Service Center toll-free number, 800-659-2955 (TTY 800-877-8339). Assistance is also available by sending an email to DisasterCustomerService@sba.gov or by visiting sba.gov.

Individuals can register with FEMA online at DisasterAssistance.gov or via smartphone or tablet at m.fema.gov. Applicants may also call 800-621-3362 (Voice, 7-1-1/Relay) or TTY 800-462-7585. The phone lines operate 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. EDT, seven days a week.