The Clewiston News

Apply for Operation Blue Roof at LaBelle location

TALLAHASSEE — Eligible homeowners in Broward, Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Glades, Hardee, Hendry, Highlands, Hillsborough, Lee, Manatee, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Palm Beach, Pinellas, Polk, and Sarasota counties who sustained roof damage from Hurricane Irma now have additional locations where they can apply for Operation Blue Roof and complete the Right of Entry (ROE) form that allows government employees and contractors onto their property to assess damage and install a temporary covering.

Operation Blue Roof, which assists eligible homeowners with temporary roof repairs, is a program the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) tasks the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Jacksonville District, to implement. This program is currently available at no cost only to eligible primary homeowners in 17 Florida counties. This program may be expanded to other counties later.

All centers are open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., seven days a week, unless otherwise stated.

Hendry County location is the Walmart Parking Lot, 1951 Hickpochee Ave., LaBelle.

Only primary residences with standard shingled roofs are eligible to receive a temporary blue roof. Metal roofs and mobile homes may be repaired as practical on a case-by-case basis. Roofs with greater than 50 percent structural damage are not eligible for this program.

For rental property, legal permission for a blue roof to be installed must be obtained from the property owner. Renters also must get legal permission from their landlord to continue occupying the residence until more permanent repairs are made.

Information about Operation Blue Roof is available on the Jacksonville District websites at www.saj.usace.army.mil/BlueRoof, www.saj.usace.army.mil/blueroof_espanol/. Information is also available in English and Spanish by calling 888-ROOF-BLU (888-766-3258).

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.

Disaster 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.