FEMA extends incident period for February storms and flooding

JACKSON, Miss. (WCBI)Federal disaster assistance could soon start flowing to aid more Mississippi residents impacted by last February’s storms and flooding.

The official incident event was for the severe storms, straight-line winds, tornadoes and flooding which occurred in February.  Due to the continuing effects of the flood following those storms, the “incident period” was amended to Feb. 22 to Aug. 23, 2019. The major disaster declaration, signed by President Trump on April 23, initially designated Feb. 22 to March 29 as the “incident period,” for disaster DR-4429-MS.

Citing unprecedented and ongoing flooding, the state asked FEMA to extend the incident period closure date to Aug. 23. Of the Mississippi counties declared eligible for federal assistance, eight – Clay, Humphreys, Issaquena, Lowndes, Monroe, Sharkey, Warren and Yazoo – are eligible for FEMA “Individual Assistance” (IA) programs for individuals and households.

Although the incident period was extended, eligible damages must be the result of the February storms and floods for which the original disaster was declared.  If your damages are not related to the storms that began in late February, you are not eligible for assistance under this disaster.

  • If your damages are not related to the storms that began in late February, you are not eligible for assistance under this disaster.
  •  You must apply with FEMA in order to become eligible for assistance. You can register with FEMA by visiting www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 800-621-3362 (TTY 800-462-7585). The toll-free lines are open daily 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Multi-lingual operators are available.
  • Applicants who previously registered for FEMA assistance, but were determined to have suffered damages outside the original incident period, will now automatically be reviewed for eligibility and do not have to appeal or re-apply.
  • Even though the incident period has been extended, it DOES NOT include an extension on Public Assistance funding (funding for infrastructure, community-based improvements.)

By approving the state’s request, FEMA potentially increased the number of storm- and flood-damaged households eligible for IA. Additional home inspections may be required by FEMA inspectors to verify storm related damages.

“This expansion of the original timeframe will allow for more Mississippi communities to receive the help they need to recover from the storms,” said FEMA’s Federal Coordinating Officer Joe Girot. “We are confident that our strong partnership with the state will allow for a smooth, coordinated effort on behalf of these impacted communities.”

Eligible survivors impacted by the February storms, either on or before Aug. 23, can still register for disaster assistance with FEMA.

The last day to register for FEMA disaster assistance in Nov. 19, 2019.

 There’s still time to register in person at the two Joint Disaster Recovery Center locations, listed below. Both locations are set to close on October 31st. Both DRCs will operate 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays; 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Closed Sunday.

Lowndes County:

East Columbus Gym

222 Lawrence Drive

Columbus, MS 39702

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