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Senator Brown Update On Massachusetts Disaster Assistance Information

Press Release

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

As Massachusetts continues to recover from last month's devastating flooding, U.S. Senator Scott Brown (R-MA) released the following statement regarding the recovery efforts:

"It's important that every Massachusetts citizen impacted by last month's floods is aware of the available government aid," Senator Brown said. "I am working closely with other members of the delegation to ensure that the individuals and communities most affected by the devastation have the tools they need to recover. I encourage the citizens of Massachusetts to take advantage of these resources in the days and weeks ahead."

Senator Brown encourages Massachusetts residents, especially in flood-prone areas, to review the information about federal disaster assistance, which can be found below and by accessing www.fema.gov and www.DisasterAssistance.gov.

FAST FACTS: MASSACHUSETTS DISASTER ASSISTANCE INFORMATION

* On March 29, 2010, President Obama issued a major disaster declaration for Massachusetts at the urging of congressional and state leaders. This declaration triggered the release of Federal funds to help qualified individuals, households and businesses affected by and recovering from the severe storms and flooding that occurred throughout March.

* Individuals and families in Bristol, Essex, Middlesex, Norfolk, Plymouth, Suffolk and Worcester Counties are eligible for assistance, including:

* Rental payments for temporary housing for up to three months for homeowners and one month for renters. This assistance can be extended after the initial period based on a review of individual applications.

* Various grants for home repairs and replacement of essential household items not covered by insurance to make damaged homes safe, sanitary and functional.

* Grants to replace personal property to help meet serious medical, dental, funeral, transportation and other disaster-related needs not covered by insurance.

* Small Business Administration (SBA) Loans to help meet other residential losses not fully compensated by insurance-$200,000 for primary residences; $40,000 for personal property; up to $2 million for business property losses.

* Individuals and families affected by the floods also have an extended deadline of May 11, 2010 to file their tax returns.

* All individuals, families, and business owners interested in applying for assistance should start the application process by calling the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) teleregistration number at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for hearing and speech impaired, during the hours of 7:00AM to 10:00PM, daily until further notice.

* Registration can also be done online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov

* In addition, five Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) have opened in Massachusetts to assist individuals, families and businesses affected by the floods. Each DRC is staffed with FEMA and Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) disaster recovery specialists to assist those affected through the process of applying for disaster assistance. Citizens are encouraged to register with FEMA through the above means BEFORE visiting a DRC.

* Recovery specialists can check case status, answer questions about claims and request information FEMA needs to process the claim.

* Recovery specialists can also supply contact for other programs that provide low-cost risk reduction measures to make homes and businesses safer. IRS tax specialists and SBA representatives will also be available to answer questions.

* DRCs are in the following locations:

Essex County
Flint Public Library
1 South Main Street
Middleton, MA 01949
Hours:
Monday - Thursday: 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Friday: 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Sunday: 1 p.m.- 5 p.m.

Middlesex County
Billerica Public Library
15 Concord Road
Billerica, MA 01821
Hours:
Monday - Thursday: 9 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Friday and Saturday: 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Norfolk County
Thomas Crane Public Library
40 Washington Street
Quincy, MA 02169
Hours:
Monday - Thursday: 9 a.m. - 7 p.m.
Friday and Saturday: 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Plymouth County
Lakeville Free Public Library
4 Precinct Street
Lakeville, MA 02347
Hours:

Worcester County
Thayer Memorial Library
717 Main Street
Lancaster, MA 01523
Hours:
Seven days a week: 10 a.m. - 7 p.m.

* The SBA and the Farm Service Agency also provide loans of up to $2 million and $500,000 respectively for farmers, ranchers, aquaculture operators, and small agricultural cooperatives to cover production and property losses, excluding primary residence and other adverse economic impacts from the floods.


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