Important FEMA deadlines approaching fast

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Tell your friends and neighbors to register for Disaster Assistance;
the deadline to apply is Monday, December 10, 2018.

Your friends or neighbors may not fully understand how the disaster assistance programs work which may have kept them from registering and getting all the recovery help they may be eligible for.

Emphasize to friends and neighbors the first step toward obtaining recovery assistance for individuals is to register with FEMA. The deadline to apply is Dec.10th.

They might say they have not registered with FEMA because they have insurance. Sometimes damage is found that insurance won’t cover, but federal disaster assistance may.

They may still be waiting for a visit from an insurance adjuster or for an insurance settlement. If so, urge them to go ahead and register with FEMA; insurance may not meet all their disaster related damage incurred needs.

Impacted residents should go ahead with necessary repairs to make their house livable, but they must be sure to keep papers and receipts for all work since FEMA may require this documentation.

Friends, neighbors or family members may think they make too much money to apply for assistance. However, most state and federal disaster assistance programs are available to individuals of all income levels. The kind of help provided depends on the applicant's circumstances and unmet needs.

Some may say they didn’t sustain enough damage, but there may damage not visible at first that is discovered during repair work that was not on their initial insurance claim. If they are registered for disaster assistance they may be covered.

There are enough disaster funds to take care of every eligible applicant, so they should not worry that they are taking money from other applicants whom they feel need it more.

If you have friends, neighbors or family members who are concerned FEMA disaster assistance will interrupt or interfere with federal assistance they are already receiving, let them know disaster assistance grants are not taxable income and will not affect eligibility for Social Security, Medicaid, welfare assistance, SNAP, Supplemental Security Income or any other federal programs.

How they can register for assistance:

Log onto DisasterAssistance.gov
Call 800-621-3362. Persons who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability and use a TTY may call 800-462-7585. If you use 711 or VRS or require accommodations while visiting a center, call 800-621-3362. Toll-free numbers are open daily from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Visit a disaster recovery center. To find the nearest center in Florida, visit fema.gov/DRCLocator

· For more information on Florida recovery, visit Florida State Disaster website floridadisaster.org.

Disaster Unemployment Assistance

The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity application deadline for Disaster Unemployment Assistance is this Friday, Dec.7. DUA is available to Florida residents in Bay, Calhoun, Franklin, Gadsden, Gulf, Holmes, Jackson, Leon, Liberty, Taylor, Wakulla and Washington counties. DUA is available for unemployment beginning Oct. 14, 2018, until April 13, 2019, as long as the individual’s unemployment continues to be a result of the disaster. Find more information about application criteria at www.floridajobs.org.

Disaster Recovery Centers

All DRCs are open Sunday to Saturday from 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted.

Bay County:

Bay County Public Library
898 West 11th Street, Panama City, FL 32401
Sun.-Sat. 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Callaway Community Center
599 Beulah Avenue, Callaway, FL 32404
Sun.-Sat. 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Calhoun County:

Blountstown Public Library
17731 NE Pear St. Blountstown, FL 32424
Mon-Sat 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Sunday noon to 5

Franklin County:

Carrabelle Public Library
311 Saint James Avenue Carrabelle, FL 32322
Mon-Sat 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Closed Sunday

Gadsden County:

Old Gretna Elementary School
706 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. Gretna, FL 32332
Mon-Sat 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Closed Sunday

Gulf County:

Wewahitchka Branch Library
314 N. 2nd St. Wewahitchka, FL 32465
Mon-Sat 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Sun. noon to 5

Jackson County:

University Extension Office
2741 Penn Avenue, Marianna, FL 32448
Mon-Sat 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Sun. noon to 5

Leon County:

LeRoy Collins Main Library
200 W. Park Avenue, Tallahassee, FL 32301
Mon-Sat 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Closed Sunday

Liberty County:

Veterans Memorial Park
10405 NW Theo Jacobs Way, Bristol, FL 32327
Mon-Sat 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Closed Sunday

Washington County:

Washington County AG Center
1424 W. Jackson Avenue, Chipley, FL 32428
Mon-Sat 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Closed Sunday