More than 200 in Troup have applied for FEMA assistance
Published 11:30 am Thursday, January 26, 2023
During a called Troup County Board of Commissioners Meeting on Monday afternoon, representatives from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) gave the county an update on federal disaster relief efforts.
FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer John Boyle and SBA Public Affairs Specialist Vivian Santos-Rodriguez provided information on how property owners and residents can receive disaster relief due to the recent tornadoes and subsequent major disaster declaration by President Joe Biden.
Because of the declaration, public assistance federal funding is available in Butts, Henry, Jasper, Meriwether, Newton, Spalding and Troup counties. Boyle said about 240 FEMA employees are in Georgia right now to help provide disaster assistance. Many are going door-to-door to get people registered if their homes were damaged.
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According to Boyle, a little more than 200 people have registered in Troup County as of Tuesday morning.
Boyle said the most important thing is that homeowners, renters and individuals in the community who sustained damage from the Jan. 12 storm is to register with FEMA. Whether they’re a renter or homeowner, register with FEMA, even if they have insurance, Boyle said.
“There might be things that insurance doesn’t cover, and they can get help with that,” Boyle said.
Boyle said that people affected by the tornadoes in Georgia can call 800-621-3362 or visit www.disasterassistance.gov to apply for assistance online.
“Fraud is also a big issue,” Boyle said. “Ask to see a FEMA badge.”
When disasters strike, sometimes people claim they are with FEMA when they are not, Boyle said.
“If someone comes and says they’re from FEMA and they want information like a driver’s license or credit card, we don’t charge for what we do, nor does SBA. We’re never going to charge. We’re going to get personal information from people, but that’s going to happen because they have the badge, and they can show that badge.”
Boyle said FEMA is still working to set up a local office, which should be opened within a week.