Tuesday, May 17, 2011

TOP STORY >> FEMA opens office for area

Leader staff writer

FEMA opened a disaster recovery center on Monday in the old Blockbuster building, 2126 N. First St. in Jacksonville to help residents repair their homes.

The center is open from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday and from 1-6:30 p.m. on Sundays. Individuals are encouraged to register with FEMA first and follow-up with the center if they have concerns or questions, although they can register at the center if they need to.

In Pulaski County, 786 people have registered with FEMA and more than $1.6 million in assistance has been approved, said FEMA Public Affairs Specialist Bob Howard. Any resident from a county declared as a disaster area can take advantage of the services offered at the center.

The office has also sent outreach teams door to door to spread the word about applying for aid.

FEMA will share the new office space with representatives from the Small Business Administration, which is offering homeowners, renters, businesses and nonprofit organizations low-interest loans to use toward repairing damage caused by the disaster.

Lonoke County residents whose homes were damaged by floods or tornadoes can register for assistance by calling FEMA at 1-800-621-3362. After registering, claims will be sent to FEMA’s Jacksonville office.