FEMA: Groups and organizations may be eligible for recovery funds after floods

Lousiana’s

Community, volunteer, faith-based and private nonprofit organizations that had damage from Louisiana’s recent severe storms and floods may be able to receive FEMA Public Assistance (PA) grants to repair or replace their facilities so they can continue offering critical and essential community services.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) hopes to offer aid to a range of groups and organizations whose main focus is helping others, in light of the recent Louisiana floods, the agency announced in a press release earlier this week:

• Community, volunteer, faith-based and private nonprofit organizations that had damage from Louisiana’s recent severe storms and floods may be able to receive FEMA Public Assistance (PA) grants to repair or replace their facilities so they can continue offering critical and essential community services.
• Critical community service organizations that may qualify for FEMA PA grants include faith-based and private schools, hospitals and other medical-treatment facilities, utilities like water, sewer and electrical systems
• Non-critical, essential service organizations may also receive PA grants. However, they must first apply for a low-interest disaster loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) before they may be considered for a PA grant. The SBA may provide up to $2 million to most private nonprofits in the form of low-interest disaster loans. Learn more about and apply for an SBA loan by going online to sba.gov/disaster. If you cannot access the website, call 800-659-2955. If you use TTY call 800-877-8339.
• PA grants may be able to cover repair or replacement costs the SBA doesn’t.
• Non-critical, essential service organizations include community centers, daycare centers, disability advocacy and service providers, homeless shelters, museums, performing arts centers, rehabilitation facilities, senior citizen centers, zoos.

Only organizations that can prove state or IRS tax exempt status may be considered. Facilities established or primarily used for religious activities may not be considered. The first step to receive a FEMA PA grant for your community, volunteer or faith-based or private nonprofit organization is to submit a Request for Public Assistance (RPA) to the State of Louisiana.

The RPA deadline is Tuesday, Sept. 15. Find RPA forms online at http://louisianapa.com/site/resources.cfm.

For more information on applying for PA grants, contact your parish’s emergency management office. You can find their contact information online at gohsep.la.gov/about/parishpa.

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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.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is the federal government’s primary source of money for the long-term rebuilding of disaster-damaged private property. SBA helps businesses of all sizes, private non-profit organizations, homeowners and renters fund repairs or rebuilding efforts and cover the cost of replacing lost or disaster-damaged personal property. These disaster loans cover losses not fully compensated by insurance or other recoveries and do not duplicate benefits of other agencies or organizations.
For more information, applicants may contact SBA’s Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center by calling (800) 659-2955, emailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov, or visiting SBA’s Web site at www.sba.gov/disaster. Deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals may call (800) 877-8339.