Community devastated by flood hears local lawmaker and federal government

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Sixteen days after the signing of the Federal Declaration on Disasters, FEMA provided an update on assistance in counties hardest hit by the remnants of Tropical Storm Fred.

These storms ravaged western North Carolina on August 17. On September 8, more than three weeks later, the Major Disaster Declaration was signed. John Boyle, FEMA’s federal coordinating officer, said the agency has been working hard since then.

“We approved $ 1.58 million for 318 households in Buncombe, Haywood and Transylvania counties,” Boyle said. “The Individual Assistance Program may be able to help with grants for temporary housing, basic home repairs, or other disaster-related needs that are not covered by insurance.”

FEDERAL FLOOD ASSISTANCE HAS BEEN APPROVED FOR WNC – WHAT NOW?

According to Boyle, FEMA officials inspected 601 homes in Buncombe, Haywood and Transylvania counties. He said anyone affected by the Fred flooding should seek help by calling 800-621-3362. People can also apply online at www.disasterassistance.gov or via the FEMA mobile app.

Boyle provided the FEMA update at a virtual flood relief panel discussion hosted by Congressman Madison Cawthorn on Thursday. In addition to FEMA, representatives from the United States Department of Agriculture, the US Small Business Association, and the North Carolina Department of Public Safety were also in attendance. The 35-minute roundtable can be viewed here.

REPRESENTING. CAWTHORN HOSTS VIRTUAL ROUNDTABLE ON FLOOD ASSISTANCE WITH FEMA, USDA AND SBA OFFICIALS

During the live broadcast, Cawthorn said he visited some of the hardest hit areas.

“To see the lives of so many literally uprooted and destroyed was devastating,” Cawthorn said.

For businesses struggling to get back on their feet, the SBA has been called upon. Kathy Cook said the SBA offers long-term, low-interest loans for costs not covered by insurance or FEMA.

“You are eligible for a disaster loan of up to $ 2 million or up to the limit of your physical damage and economic damage, regardless of the size of your business,” Cook said. “The only caveat would be if you were previously an SBA loan recipient and had to have flood insurance and let it expire. This can be a problem because you are in a situation of non-compliance.

BALM RANGE BASED ON THE CANTON TO PLAY A BENEFIT CONCERT FOR FLOOD RELIEF

Assistance programs are also available to farmers. USDA executive director Rob Satterfield said the most frequently used option is the emergency conservation program.

“This provides cost-shared assistance to clear debris from cropland and farm roads, restore permanent fences, level, shape or grade cropland, and restore conservation structures. He pays about 75% of the cost of repairing that damage, ”Satterfield said.

During the live broadcast, Cawthorn invited viewers to submit questions. Several other News 13 questions remained unanswered.

Hannah Mackenzie of News 13 has been in contact with a representative from Cawthorn’s office, who said they will work to get any questions answered.

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