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FEMA: Texans in 77 counties can now apply for federal disaster assistance

FEMA requests Pentagon's help in securing 100,000 body bags in preparing for COVID-19 spread
Posted at 3:47 PM, Feb 20, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-20 18:47:27-05

Texas homeowners and renters in the 77 counties designated for individual assistance who sustained damage may now apply for disaster assistance with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

Disaster assistance may include financial assistance for temporary lodging and home repairs, low-interest loans to cover uninsured property losses and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster.

According to FEMA, anyone with insurance and who applies for disaster assistance must also file a claim as soon as possible.

By law, FEMA cannot duplicate benefits for losses covered by insurance.

If insurance does not cover all losses, homeowners or renters may be eligible for federal assistance, FEMA said in a statement Saturday.

The fastest and easiest way to apply is by visit FEMA's disaster assistance website.

If it is not possible to register online, renters or homeowners can call 800-621-3362 (TTY: 800-462-7585). The toll-free telephone lines operate from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. CDT, seven days a week.

When you applying for assistance, FEMA says to have the following information readily available:

  • A current phone number
  • Your address at the time of the disaster and the address where you are now staying
  • A Social Security number, if available
  • A general list of damage and losses
  • If insured, the insurance policy number, or the agent and company name

"If it is safe to do so, start cleaning up now," FEMA said in a news release. "Take photos to document damage and begin cleanup and repairs to prevent further damage. Remember to keep receipts from all purchases related to the cleanup and repair."

Low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration are available to businesses, homeowners and renters. Call the SBA at 1-800-659-2955 (TTY: 800-877-8339) or visit the SBA's disaster assistance website.

The Texas counties where renters and homeowners are eligible to file for assistance are: Angelina, Aransas, Bastrop, Bee, Bell, Bexar, Blanco, Brazoria, Brazos, Brown, Burleson, Caldwell, Calhoun, Cameron, Chambers, Collin, Comal, Comanche, Cooke, Coryell, Dallas, Denton, DeWitt, Ellis, Falls, Fort Bend, Galveston, Gillespie, Grimes, Guadalupe, Hardin, Harris, Hays, Henderson, Hidalgo, Hood, Jasper, Jefferson, Johnson, Kaufman, Kendall, Lavaca, Liberty, Madison, Matagorda, Maverick, McLennan, Montague, Montgomery, Nacogdoches, Nueces, Orange, Palo Pinto, Panola, Parker, Polk, Rockwall, Sabine, San Jacinto, San Patricio, Scurry, Shelby, Smith, Stephens, Tarrant, Travis, Tyler, Upshur, Van Zandt, Victoria, Walker, Waller, Wharton, Wichita, Williamson, Wilson, and Wise.

This story was originally published by Thalia Brionez on KXXV in Waco, Texas