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How FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers are meeting a need for Tallahassee neighbors

Posted at 6:23 PM, Jun 26, 2024
  • FEMA has opened a Disaster Recovery Center at the LeRoy Collins Public Library.
  • The center is meant to serve as a place for neighbors to turn to for questions about assistance.
  • Watch the video to hear from one neighbor who has heard from FEMA and learned more about the DRC:

BROADCAST TRANSCRIPT:

Neighbors now have a place to turn to for questions about FEMA assistance following May’s tornadoes.

A FEMA disaster recovery center opened their doors Tuesday at the LeRoy Collins Public Library, helping neighbors who experienced damage over a month ago.

Neighbor Thomas Hoover said his family is taking tornado recovery day by day.

“Slowly but surely, we’ve been coming around," Hoover said.

I spoke with him 3 days after the tornadoes touched down in our Tallahassee neighborhoods.

Over a month later, his family got assistance with repairs.

“FEMA finally stepped in," Hoover said. "I am glad they was able to send somebody out here to view our home and see 'they really need help.'"

A FEMA representative came to his door to help them.

Other neighbors are now able to go to the LeRoy Collins Public Library to get that help as well.
They opened a disaster recovery center.

A place that Federal Coordinator for our area John Broghan said people can apply for that assistance and more.

“It’s really meant if they have questions about their case, if they have documents they want to drop off," Brogan said. "If there is any question they want to engage with FEMA, this is the place to go.”

They have FEMA representatives looking at neighbors’ cases, taking additional documents and information and answering questions about the assistance.

Brogan said even if you’re found ineligible, read your letter carefully and come to the DRC if you have concerns.

“In addition to reading the letter carefully, I’d say it’s very important to stay in contact with FEMA because when you first register, that’s just a snapshot in time of what your situation is right then and your situation may change," Brogan said.

Another resource there: help with loans with the Small Business Administration.

Bryan Santamaria with SBA said you can come by the library to ask about how their low-interest loans work.

“A lot of folks use our programs as a stop gap. Say someone has a hole their roof, it’s leaking water," Santamaria said. They can use our program, get their repairs done while they wait for the insurance.”

I told Hoover about the center opening their doors Tuesday.

“I am gong to get down at that center and find out more information," Hoover said.

Brogan said this center will be a resource hub for neighbors until the help is no longer needed.