FEMA Offers Helps Local Homeowners Apply For Federal Assistance

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VAN BUREN (KFSM) -- FEMA is in Van Buren this week helping homeowners in Crawford and Sebastian counties apply for federal assistance after storms and flooding left behind damage across the area this spring.

A Disaster Recovery Center is located at 615 East Pointer Trail for those who want to visit with FEMA in person after experiencing damage from storms that occurred May 7 through June 15, 2015.

Ashley Rice and her family said they have damage from flooding that occurred in Dyer during the last week of May, and they registered with FEMA on July 8. Within two days, someone came out to survey the damage, but she said they still don’t know if they are eligible for assistance.

FEMA Public Information Officer Ron Roth said every case is different -- and getting results after registering can take time.

"If for some reason you feel like it's taking too long to hear back, that's the ideal opportunity to take advantage of this recovery center. Come down here; when you register you get a nine-digit ID number. Come down here with that number [and] talk to one of our applicant assistants -- they will look you up and see where you're at in the process,” Roth said.

Assistance will be available through the weekend, although Roth said they will stay in town longer if they need to.

Help will be available from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and from 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday.

Homeowners can also call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or register online at http://www.DisasterAssistance.gov.

The Small Business Administration is also available for assistance in applying for loans.

More than $700,000 worth of housing assistance has been issued throughout the state, according to a FEMA news release.

Homeowners from Garland, Howard, Jefferson, Little River, Miller, Perry and Sevier counties can also get help at the Van Buren location, along with disaster recovery centers in Pine Bluff and Nashville, Ark.