The Clewiston News

Disaster Recovery Center hours change

ORLANDO, Fla. – Beginning Sunday, Oct. 29, the hours at most Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) will change to Monday through Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. and Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Survivors are encouraged to check times before going and may locate a DRC near them at www.fema.gov/disaster-recovery-centers or by calling the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362, (TTY) 800-462-7585. Helpline numbers are open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., seven days a week. DRC information is also available on the FEMA App and on FEMA’s Facebook page.

Disaster Recovery Centers offer in-person support to individuals and small business owners. Recovery specialists from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the State of Florida are available to provide assistance to anyone filling out their applications or updating their status. Voluntary organizations are available and offer a variety of services to help survivors recover. The State of Florida does not offer Food For Florida (Disaster SNAP/D-SNAP) at DRCs. A list of Food for Florida sites is available online.

The registration process is the first step in your recovery and requires information such as insurance policies and bank information for possible direct transfer of funds. Survivors are encouraged to register before visiting a DRC.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) offers low-interest federal disaster loans for homeowners, renters and businesses of all sizes. The SBA is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged property.

If you have phone and/or internet access, you may register in one of the following ways:

You may have other needs while visiting a DRC:

Disaster Survivor Assistance (DSA) crews are canvassing affected areas and are able to register survivors for FEMA assistance, if needed. Telephonic Interpretation Services are available in many languages to assist survivors with language needs. When residents require further assistance, the teams may refer them to a DRC.

If you have already registered, it is not necessary to visit a DRC, but you may still want to go speak with a Recovery Specialist to update your status or find help from the other organizations.

FEMA grants do not have to be repaid. FEMA assistance is nontaxable and will not affect eligibility for Social Security, Medicaid or other federal benefits.

Survivors should register even if they have insurance. FEMA cannot duplicate insurance payments, but underinsured applicants may receive help after their claims have been settled.

For more recovery information, visit www.FEMA.gov/IrmaFL, or follow us @FEMARegion4 on Twitter and on FEMA’s Facebook page.