Disaster Assistance, how to begin.
Recovering after declared disaster takes time and knowledge of federal policy and process.

Disaster Assistance by Louisiana Governors Get a Game Plan using Communications Obscurity to limit assistance

by Murray Wennerlund published 10-4-2021 updated 1-15-2022
How Louisiana makes its "Get a Game Plan" nearly impossible for the people living in the state to understand where to get disaster recovery assistance. With every new storm, new websites are created and now they are creating compartmental websites.

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SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program regulation changes Sept 8, 2021

by Murray Wennerlund published 10-3-2021 updated 4-18-2022
Recent changes are: eligible uses of the loan proceeds, business size standard, maximum loan limits, appeal of application that has been declined for a second time.

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FEMA Appeal Process Information the additional information found within your application.

by Murray Wennerlund published 9-20-2021 updated 4-16-2022
The appeal process I posted years ago is still valid. I am adding this additional information after Hurricane Ida in 2021 which is located online in your application to FEMA. Look to my other resource for a sample of the appeals letter.

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Louisiana Hurricane Ida Supplies from Points of Distribution (PODS) POD Status Log - WebEOC 9.1

by Murray Wennerlund published 9-10-2021
The Louisiana Governors Office of Homeland Security Emergency Preparedness GOSHEP publishes daily a list of all Points of Distribution operating in the state. This list seems to be updated every morning and is linked win this article.

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Where can I find the online Operation Blue Roof application form? Not at Blueroof.us.

by Murray Wennerlund published 9-9-2021
Its not unusual to not find the online registration form for Operation Blue Roof provided by the US Army Corps of Engineers. Its also not unusual to not find a local signup location. Let me share with you what I found Sept. 9, 2021 for your Blue Roof.

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Will FEMA reimburse me for buying a chainsaw or a generator? Maybe, but most likely no.

by Murray Wennerlund published 9-8-2021 updated 12-9-2021
Read all warning labels: FEMA News and Press Releases may not be as they seem. They will not link policy or training. Statements made in press releases to be true have to be backed up with official policy documents and / or Federal Register publications.

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Transitional Sheltering Assistance (TSA) Program from FEMA

by Murray Wennerlund published 9-7-2021
FEMA on Sept. 2, 2021 has activated the Transitional Sheltering Assistance TSA program that will provide temporary housing for those who have been displaced by Hurricane Ida. This program only pays for the Room and the Taxes on the room and nothing more

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Hurricane Ida Presidential Declaration of a Major Disaster for the State of Louisiana

by Murray Wennerlund published 9-7-2021
The Small Business Administration on 09/03/2021 published to the Federal Register a Notice of the Presidential declaration of a major disaster for the State of Louisiana FEMA-4611-DR, dated 08/29/2021 for Physical Damage and EIDL

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Louisiana Hurricane Ida 4611-DR-LA

by Murray Wennerlund published 9-7-2021 updated 1-15-2022
Louisiana Hurricane Ida FEMA 4611-DR-LA , DR-4611 links, research and resources.

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Rental assistance available for those in hardship due to COVID-19

by Murray Wennerlund published 8-22-2021 updated 12-31-2021
All state and U.S. Territories have a point of contact for rental assistance and housing assistance. These services have been in place for years and have been used by thousands for housing concerns.

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Our Federal Government Policy for disaster assistance labeled "Sequence of Delivery" for Disaster Relief and Assistance follows two standards that will seriously harm more than 35% of all disaster survivors in any state, county or parish in the United States of America. If you are below average income levels for your community you are in a group that can not afford to take on additional debt. The debt the federal government is going to ask you to take is equal to the total of your disaster recovery costs. Congress pushed to have all disaster survivors take SBA Disaster Loans after applying for FEMA temporary disaster relief. The Small Business Administration Disaster Recovery Loans will grant loans to income groups labeled Low Income by using real property as collateral. The SBA and FEMA will not tell you about other federal disaster assistance that is available to you that is not listed in their sequence of delivery. In fact, your state governors disaster response team will not mention anything outside of the same FEMA sequence of delivery for disaster relief. 

This year it's more important to understand what is available to you and to limit the amount of household debt you place on your working members of your family. In Louisiana we have a serious issue with programs being setup to be reimbursements instead of grants. Grants are given for a specific purpose and you apply those funds as instructed by the grantee. In the state of Louisiana the Governors office to the director of the grant programs feels homeowners would rather purchase a new truck than to repair their home damaged in the disaster. This was stated publicly April 13, 2018 by the director of the OCD-DRU who is responsible for over $1 billion in disaster aid yearly. 

Issues with reimbursement programs are numerous for low to moderate income (LMI) households. Many LMI households mistakenly use FEMA disaster relief funds incorrectly and end up counting against them. A LMI family that received $30,000 to make temporary repairs to their home would have that $30,000 in temporary repairs deducted from any additional relief funds that are provided by the federal government. Many people used a part of their temporary repair funds to purchase vehicles after the flood to be able to return to work. Others spent the FEMA assistance on appliances, flooring, and other items that did not fall into the approved items list of other programs. When you are found to have been given duplicative grants or assistance you have to return the funds before you can receive additional funds. Some programs will allow you to show the work completed with the funds and credit you toward additional grants. 

If you received $30,000 from FEMA then were offered $65,000 from another grant program the $30,000 from FEMA would be considered a duplication of benefits from federal disaster assistance programs.  Your $65,000 grant would be reduced by the amount of the FEMA grant. Most states follow their own policies which they create after each disaster. They are not held responsible to assist anyone with the federal funds distributed to the states. In fact, if the state finds you ineligible for any reason from not cooperating with state workers to moving too slow with your recovery efforts they will terminate your funding before it's issue. 

The Number One Rule for LMI households is to refuse the SBA loan offered and to wait out the federal governments push to have you adsorb all debts related to the disaster. Calculations show that after each disaster the LMI household looses 33% of their total net worth if you follow the federal sequence of delivery. This means after your 3rd disaster your household is unable to recover from future disasters and your debt is more than your total assets leaving your net worth at zero or less than zero. This is when homes start their decay phase and does not stop until the property is sold and the family reduces their disaster debt.  

We have been working with hundreds of disaster victims and providing oversight of state programs. We are also disaster survivors rebuilding after the 2016 floods in Louisiana. It's not easy, we know more reasons to take the easy way out and just give up and accept the total disaster debt on your shoulders. Your state would appreciate you dropping out of the program because they will transfer the federal grant funds allocated to you to a state managed program that will not assist homeowners with their disaster debt. The state of Louisiana averages 35% of households are labeled as dropouts or as they state, "Voluntary withdrawal from the Grant Program." 

Voluntary withdrawal includes: 

  • State rescinds (terminates) your grant for their own reasons and will not tell you about your right to appeal.
  • State rescinds your grant because you argue with your state hired call center worker claiming if you do not corporate with temporary call center workers those workers can request your grant be terminated.

You get the picture, you will voluntarily withdraw from the program if you do not follow program policy as it is created. Policy does not have to be made public and can be back dated. Your Voluntary actions may not seem so voluntary when you are not told you can appeal the states effort to remove you from grant programs. Thousands of homeowners have been terminated for policy reasons that didn't need to be terminated. It's of no fault to the homeowner that their income limits their recovery time. It's grant programs that are designed to help the low to moderate income households but those same programs allow states to create policy that allows the state not to distribute grants to households so they can rebuild after the disaster. 

Read more within the pages of this site. Learn how to ask questions and learn what the federal programs are offering you for disaster recovery. 

 

 

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