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Seven Months After Katrina: FEMA Aid to Alabama Tops $591 Million


Individuals and Families Receive $123.6 Million

March 24, 2006, MONTGOMERY, Ala. -- In the nearly seven months since Hurricane Katrina came ashore and battered the Gulf Coast, federal and state officials have approved well over half a billion dollars in disaster aid to Alabamians and evacuees from other states affected by the storm. According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Alabama Emergency Management Agency, aid to Alabama has now topped $591 million.

“As we proceed in the recovery phase, we are continuing to assist evacuees with their claims and transitions into longer-term housing,” said Federal Coordinating Officer Michael Bolch. “The overall focus has also been shifting to mitigation, where we assist in rebuilding and repair of property and infrastructure with prevention and preparation for future hurricanes in mind.”

Some highlights of assistance in Alabama include:

$123.6 million in assistance to individuals and families

* More than 36,000 individuals and families received housing assistance totaling $87.2 million. This includes $62.1 million in rental assistance.
* 29,818 Katrina survivors received $36.3 million for other essential needs.

$99.5 million in U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) loans

* The U.S. Small Business Administration approved $72.6 million in loans to 1,984 homeowners and renters plus,
* $22.5 million to 286 businesses and
* $4.4 million in loans to 65 small business owners for working capital and repairs.

$368 million was approved for the following

* Public Assistance (PA) approved $94.4 million for infrastructure costs, debris removal, protective measures such as emergency services and law enforcement, road and bridge repair and the restoration of public utilities.
* FEMA approved close to $3.1 million for immediate crisis counseling program services.
* The National Flood Insurance Program disbursed $16 million in initial flood damage claims.
* Alabama has received approximately $795 thousand in Disaster Unemployment Assistance for individuals out of work as a result of Katrina, and who were not covered by regular unemployment assistance.
* More than $254 million was obligated for mission assignments allowing for services, equipment and personnel from many federal agencies, the American Red Cross and other volunteer organizations. These services included the use of military aircraft for rapid needs assessment, crisis counseling for survivors, interpreters for non-English speaking individuals, and shipments of 280 truckloads of ice, 186 truckloads of water, 103 truckloads of Meals Ready to Eat (MREs), 11 truckloads of generators, 27 truckloads of cots and 32 truckloads of blankets.

Other disaster assistance:

* 6,384 individuals live in interim housing facilities in Alabama. Interim housing includes hotels and 2,116 travel trailers on commercial and private property and on other FEMA leased sites.
* To date, 112,762 Alabama residents applied for various federal and state assistance programs. The deadline to register for assistance in Alabama was March 11, 2006.
* 40,222 individuals sought services at 31 State/FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers. Services for the aging were provided to 1,954 individuals.
* 99.9 percent or 94,856 housing inspections in Alabama have been completed.
* 256,333 Katrina survivors received food stamps issued by Alabama Department of Human Resources. This represents $29.3 million, received through a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
* 3.288 million cubic yards of storm-related debris has been disposed of statewide.
* Close to $55 million is anticipated for hazard mitigation projects to help Alabamians rebuild to standards that help prevent damage in future storms.

The deadline has passed for Katrina survivors to register for assistance. Applicants who would like to check the status of their claim or update their contact information may call toll-free at 800-621 FEMA (3362) or TTY for the hearing-or-speech impaired 800-462-7585. Applicants may also check their claims online at Please have your FEMA registration ID number handy when you call.


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