Research based learning

"Providing resource supported answers."

Start your Long Term Recovery process by learning what federal and state services are offered after a declared disaster.

  • FEMA
  • Volunteer Groups
  • SBA (Business and Homeowner loans)
  • Volunteer Groups
  • HUD Community Development Block Grant Disaster Relief (CDBG-DR)
  • Family, neighbors, friends.
You are going to hear about IA (Individual Assistance) and IHP (Individual Household Program and ONA (Other Needs Assistance).

IA (Individual Assistance)
Taking the event order you will be offered a small amount of grant money if any for IA. This is a safe grant and will not be used against you later as long as it is for rental or during the time you were suffering and that is during the disaster. If you lost your home or apartment this IA grant may pay for Hotels, Apartments, or other shelter directly. What they give you in form of a check is to cover your time between the disaster and when you get into a rental agreement that they will pay directly. Take the IA money.

  • IA Housing Needs
    • Temporary Housing (a place to live for a limited period of time): Financial assistance may be available to homeowners or renters to rent a temporary place to live. If no rental properties are available, a government housing unit may be provided, but only as a last resort.
    • Lodging Expenses Reimbursement: Reimbursement of hotel expenses for homeowners or renters may be available for short periods of time due to inaccessibility or utility outage if not covered by insurance or any other program.

IHP (Individual Household Program)
This is where we say think before you accept anything. If it's a grant you receive this money can only be used on repairing your home. But, if your home is a Manufactured home this money will count against you for later grants. Also, if you purchase appliances, furniture, hot water heater, bedding, clothes you will be penalized for those purchases later. This is to make your home safe to live in but also doesn't not count as funds for rebuilding as your home was prior to the disaster. You must understand that every dollar of IHP will be counted against you with other programs so you must spend that money you have recieved only on items that other programs will not offer you grant money for or toward the final repairs of your home.
More Information and Resources.

  • IHP Housing Needs
    • Temporary Housing (a place to live for a limited period of time): Financial assistance may be available to homeowners or renters to rent a temporary place to live. If no rental properties are available, a government housing unit may be provided, but only as a last resort.
    • Lodging Expenses Reimbursement: Reimbursement of hotel expenses for homeowners or renters may be available for short periods of time due to inaccessibility or utility outage if not covered by insurance or any other program.
    • Repair: Financial assistance may be available to homeowners to repair disaster-caused damage to their primary residence that is not covered by insurance. The goal is to make the damaged home safe, sanitary, or fit to occupy.
      • Note: IHP Grants to repair your home are for the structure only. You can not purchase vehicles, kitchen appliances, kitchen cabinets, tables, chairs or other furniture. You can not purchase hot water heaters or bathroom fixtures. The IHP Grants are to make your home or part of your home safe but they do not include anything like a new microwave. Basically it's Windows, Walls, Doors and clean your floor. Everything else will be deducted from grants down the sequence of deliver which may or may not be a deduction from your grant but rather a debt that has to be repaid before additional grant money is awarded.
    • Replacement: Financial assistance may be available to homeowners to replace their home destroyed in the disaster that is not covered by insurance. The goal is to help the homeowner with the cost of replacing their destroyed home.
    • Permanent or Semi-Permanent Housing Construction: Direct assistance or money for the construction of a home. This type of help occurs only in insular areas or other locations specified by FEMA, where no other type of housing assistance is possible.

Read our two part series on what IHP Grants can be used for.

ONA (Other Needs Assistance)
To date we have not had any reports of anyone being awarded ONA grants which can be used for anything from clothing to vehciles. We do know that nearly everyone that lost a vehicle was told if you applied to the SBA and were "Declined" by the SBA FEMA may award you the ONA. We find this FALSE based on the fact that the SBA will qualify you for collateral loans and if you own a home even with a mortgage they will create you an approved loan amount that will disqualify you from any ONA grant. This grant is not actually my opinion worth applying for because FEMA requires you to apply for a SBA loan first. More information and resources.

NOTICE: FEMA will tell you that you will have to apply for the SBA Disaster Loan to be qualified for ONA Grant money. The only way to be awarded ONA Grant money from FEMA is to be declined by the SBA which only happens under extreme or adverse conditions. 1. You are a known terrorist or enemy of the state and country. 2. You are in prison. 3. Your household has no verifiable income. 4. You are dead.

SBA Disaster Loan Program (By default we say NO to any SBA loan application.)
Be very careful and be aware of the risks you are about to take when you are asked or told to apply for an SBA Disaster Loan. These are LOANS and NOT GRANTS. These are not Business Loans that are forgiven after 5 to 7 years. These are loans which the SBA will offer you even if you have no created an income of $18,090 Net per year as long as you have collateral or assets they will approve you a loan.

  • Those that are below the 80% AMI for your area should NOT apply for the SBA disaster loan.
  • Those between 80% and 120% should seek only local lenders for any short term rebuilding loans or non at all.
  • Those over 120% will be paying market interest rates so it doesn't help to apply to the SBA either. Look to local lenders to borrow money.

In all cases and all income levels it is important to calculate your recovery funds and your ability to acquire conventional loans, borrow from family, friends, draw from your retirement saves, etc. Once you select an SBA loan even if you do not take the money but you have executed the loan and then backed out or cancelled the loan that money will be used against you as available disaster recovery funds later when you are offered HUD CDBG-DR grants. We have many homeowners that are willing to share their experiences with you directly about the SBA loan process. Most will tell you to seek other assistance and avoid the application process of the SBA Disaster Loan program completely. Read what a 35 year retired OCD-DRU director has to say about the program and take the words seriously. Say No to the SBA Loan, read more.

We are homeowners, renters, victims of disasters that thought the federal system was here to help us. We were wrong, the shock were all were in because of the disaster blinded us and with that in mind I want to tell you personally that it has taken more than one year to even reach the point of understanding what we needed to do for our disaster recovery. We are still living in a RV 2 years after the disaster and still fighting the federal and state disaster recovery people over every penny we are qualified to receive.
No one plans on disasters because we have federal, state and local government employees we pay to handle these matters. We expected them to tell us from the first day what to do. What we have learned was nothing short of everything FUBAR. Many lost thousands over policy that has not business even being in a disaster relief or disaster recovery program while others were lied to and suffer today a debt burden they would have never had if our local elected officials and paid government employees would have advised us with the correct information. Even news media outlets from local services failed to pass the information about how to recover which they all hand in hand.

FAQ No. 108    

Date: 3-25-2019 Updated: 3-25-2019 Subject:

From: Erin Monroe Wesley
Sent: Monday, September 19, 2016 9:58 AM
To: knapp@brac.org Don Pierson olivier@c100la.org sreilly@lamar.com mfaulk@centralcss.org
mayor@shreveportla.gov Johnny Bradberry shawndwilson@dota.louisiana.gov parich@lsu.edu
rjetson@me.com rharris@lma.org attyrol@aol.com jimmydurbin@bellsouth.net
jrobideaux@lafayettela.gov davennorris@hotmail.com commissioner@ldaf.state.us
james.ted@legis.la.gov morrishd@legis.state.la.us poper@legis.state.la.us shadoinr@legis.la.gov
suelkins@cox.net Jacqui Vines jvineswyatt@gmail.com


Cc: Pat Forbes Rowdy Gaudet Lori Dupont Erin Monroe WesleySubject: Restore Louisiana Task Force

Good Morning -
Thank you for agreeing to serve on the Governor's Restore Louisiana Task Force, which is charged with establishing short and long-term priorities in developing plans for recovery and redevelopment throughout the state of Louisiana as a result of the March and August flooding events. Our first meeting of the task force will be held on Wednesday, September 28, 2016, 9:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m., in House Committee Room 5 at the Louisiana State Capitol. Please let us know if you are able to attend by responding to Lori Dupont, copied here, at Lori.Dupont@la.gov. I have attached the following documents for your review and records in preparation for our first meeting:

  1. Executive Order JBE No. 16-65 creating the Restore Louisiana Task Force
  2. A letter from Governor Edwards to President Obama dated August 23, 2016
  3. A letter from Governor Edwards to President Obama dated September 12, 2016
  4. A letter from the Executive Office of the President, Office of Management & Budget, to House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers and
  5. A flood briefing document prepared for our visits with members of Congress.

We would like to engage the members of the task force as early as this week in our meetings with HUD, FEMA, and GOHSEP this Friday, September 23rd . Please let us know if you would like to join us for these meetings this week.

Restore Louisiana Task Force Membership

  • Adam Knapp, President & CEO, Baton Rouge Area Chamber
  • Jacqui Vines, Retired Executive, Cox Communications
  • Don Pierson, Secretary, Louisiana Economic Development
  • Michael Olivier, CEO, Committee of 100 for Economic Development, Inc.
  • Sean Reilly, CEO, Lamar Advertising
  • Michael Faulk, Superintendent, Central Community School System
  • Ollie Tyler, Mayor, City of Shreveport
  • Johnny Bradberry, Executive Assistant to the Governor for Coastal Affairs, Coastal Protection & Restoration Authority Board Chairman
  • Dr. Shawn Wilson, Secretary, Department of Transportation & Development
  • Dr. James A. Richardson, State Economist
  • Raymond Jetson, Board Member, Baton Rouge Area Foundation, President & CEO, MetroMorphosis
  • Ronnie Harris, Executive Director, Louisiana Municipal Association
  • Roland Dartez, Executive Director, Louisiana Police Jury Association
  • Jimmy Durbin, Former Mayor, City of Denham Springs
  • Joel Robideaux, Mayor-President, Lafayette Parish
  • Dave Norris, Mayor, City of West Monroe
  • Mike Strain, Commissioner, Department of Agriculture & Forestry
  • Edward "Ted" James, State Representative, District 101
  • Dan W. &ldquoBlade&rdquo Morrish, State Senator, District 25
  • J. Rogers Pope, State Representative, District 71
  • Robert E. Shadoin, State Representative, District 12
  • Suzie Elkins, Consultant

Restore Louisiana Task Force Staff Support

  • Erin Monroe Wesley, Special Counsel, Office of the Governor
  • Pat Forbes, Executive Director, Office of Community Development
  • Rowdy Gaudet, Chief of Staff, Office of Community Development
  • Lori Dupont, Executive Assistant to the Executive Director, Office of Community Development

Additional staffers to be identified.
We look forward to working with each of you in our state's recovery efforts.

Erin
Erin Monroe Wesley
Special Counsel (Policy Director/Legislative Affairs)

FAQ No. 140    

Date: 7-13-2019 Updated: 7-13-2019 Subject: State Directors

For Disaster Related and Preparation visit your OHSEP website linked here:

FAQ No. 139    

Date: 7-9-2019 Updated: 7-9-2019 Subject: OHSEP

Dear Homeowner,

You are receiving this notification because you have not closed on your grant award offered by Restore Louisiana.

Please note that you MUST execute your grant agreement by Wednesday, July 31, 2019 or the grant offered will be rescinded and you will no longer be able to participate in the Restore Louisiana Homeowner Assistance Program.

Please reach out to your assigned Case Manager as soon as possible to schedule your closing:

Case Manager Name: [SNIP]
Case Manager Email: [SNIP]
Case Manager Phone: [SNIP]

Sincerely,

The Restore Louisiana Homeowner Assistance Program

Editors note: Case Workers appear to be titled Case Managers which would match the states policy that any manager can find a homeowner not cooperative and rescind their grant award and drop them from the program. This information was publish in Feb. 2019 and offered by the lead legal adviser for the state of Louisiana OCD-DRU.

FAQ No. 138    

Date: 7-9-2019 Updated: 7-9-2019 Subject: State Contractors

Documents from Housing and Urban Development Department

Housing and Urban Development Department
Notice


Applicability of Updates to Duplication of Benefits Requirements under the Stafford Act for Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery Grantees


Abstract: Elsewhere in the Federal Register, the Department published the notice ' Updates to Duplication of Benefits Requirements Under the Stafford Act for Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Disaster Recovery Grantees,' which reflects the requirements of recent CDBG disaster recovery (CDBG-DR) supplemental appropriations acts and amendments to the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act. This notice makes conforming amendments to notices governing CDBG-DR grants...

Updates to Duplication of Benefits Requirements Under the Stafford Act for Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery Grantees

Abstract: This notice describes the requirements to prevent duplication of benefits applicable to Community Development Block Grant disaster recovery (CDBG-DR) grants received in response to a disaster declared between 2015 and 2021. It updates existing duplication of benefits requirements to reflect recent CDBG-DR supplemental appropriations acts and amendments to the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act impacting certain grantees. The notice also includes minor...

FAQ No. 137    

Date: 6-20-2019 Updated: 6-20-2019 Subject: CDBG-DR

State of Louisiana HUD CDBG-DR AMI (%) Percentage.

AMI up to 80% 2018 (low to moderate) PDF Download.

AMI up to 120% 2018/19 (average) PDF Download.

Need more information? Here's your jump board.

If your AMI changed from below 80% to over 80% and under 120% you can appeal that your increase has not be for two consecutive years. Over 120% AMI you can argue the on the same grounds if your increase has not been for 2 consecutive years. (Based on light Sunday reading)

Those of you that are over HUD's income limits (120%) and would like to understand more about how HUD determines over income limits this link is for you.
Resource link: FR-2018-07-26

Very Low Income * 2.4 = 120% AMI.
Very Low Income is 50% AMI.
Example: State wide VLI family of 2 = $24,850
$24,850 * 2.4 = $59,640 120% or HUD Income Limit.
So be sure the state doesn't use the math I just showed you. Some areas are much higher while others are lower. The state really likes to put everyone in one box, so look out for a spreadsheet with the above calculations in VLI for your areas.

Example: Louisiana State Wide 120% AMI.

Research Resources:

FAQ No. 135    

Date: 6-16-2019 Updated: 6-16-2019 Subject: AMI

34. Rental assistance to displaced homeowners. The requirement of 42 U.S.C. 5305(a)(8) are modified to authorize grantees to extend rental assistance payments on behalf of qualified homeowners for up to 24 months. After a disaster, many homeowners encounter unanticipated delays and scarcity of available construction and/or elevation contractors in their area. While undergoing rehabilitation of their homes, most of these homeowners are forced to pay not only a mortgage, but a rental payment as well since their homes are not inhabitable. In other cases, homeowners who have paid off their mortgages must accommodate this additional rental expense into their budgets. In order to provide temporary financial assistance to these families, many of whom are low- or moderateincome households, HUD is modifying the requirements at 42 U.S.C. 5305(a)(8) to the extent necessary to allow grantees to provide up to 24 months of homeowner rental assistance to eligible applicants within the grantee's singlefamily rehabilitation/reconstruction programs. In the case of rehabilitation programs in which the homeowner is responsible for construction oversight, the grantee must establish performance milestones for the rehabilitation that are to be met by the homeowner in order to receive such payments. A grantee using this alternative requirement must document, in its policies and procedures, how it will determine the amount of assistance to be provided is necessary and reasonable. Homeowners receiving interim mortgage assistance are not eligible for rental assistance.


Resource Research:

FAQ No. 134    

Date: 6-15-2019 Updated: 6-15-2019 Subject: Allocations

33. Limitation on emergency grant payments - interim mortgage assistance. 42 U.S.C. 5305(a)(8) is modified to extend interim mortgage assistance to qualified individuals from 3 months to up to 20 months. Interim mortgage assistance is typically used in conjunction with a buyout program, or the rehabilitation or reconstruction of single-family housing, during which mortgage payments may be due but the home is uninhabitable. The time required for a household to complete the rebuilding process may often extend beyond 3 months, during which mortgage payments may be due but the home is inhabitable. Thus, this interim assistance will be critical for many households facing financial hardship during this period. Grantees may use interim housing rehabilitation payments to expedite recovery assistance to homeowners, but must establish performance milestones for the rehabilitation that are to be met by the homeowner in order to receive such payments. A grantee using this alternative requirement must document, in its policies and procedures, how it will determine the amount of assistance to be provided is necessary and reasonable.


Resource Research:

FAQ No. 133    

Date: 6-15-2019 Updated: 6-15-2019 Subject: Allocations

"Dear Homeowner,

You are receiving this notification because you have not closed on your grant award offered by Restore Louisiana.

Please note that you MUST execute your grant agreement by Wednesday, July 31, 2019 or the grant offered will be rescinded and you will no longer be able to participate in the Restore Louisiana Homeowner Assistance Program. "

According to reports filed for April and May the state of Louisiana Office of Community Development Disaster Recovery Unit working under the name of Restore Louisiana Homeowners Program has increased it's speed of processing grant awards by increasing the number of rescinded grants offered to homeowners.

April of 2019, 30 homeowners have had their HUD CDBG-DR grant awards rescinded by the state for state created policy reasons.

May of 2019 278 homeowners have had their HUD CDBG-DR grant awards rescinded by the state for state created policy reasons.

The state of Louisiana's timing will match the 3rd year since the flood and fall on or close to the anniversary date of the August 12th 2016 floods.

It appears the state has not formally offered homeowners with alternatives to their recovery. With over 2,000 homeowners at risk of losing everything from the flood to include all additional grant funds for unmet needs the state will face additional homelessness and blight as a result of meeting goals and deadline.

HUD officially allows the state to run the distribution of funds up and to the Sept. 2022. The state of Louisiana OCD-DRU has announced several times the closing dates of programs in 2018 and continues by rewording the closing of programs to the rescinding of grant awards.

"Elsewhere, this notice describes the extension of the expenditure deadline that the Department is authorized to provide to all CDBG-NDR (NDR = National Disaster Resilience) grantees, allowing them to expend funds until September 30, 2022. "

Grantee Name: Louisiana
Grant Number: B-16-DL-22_0001
Grant Award: $1,708,407,000
Balance: $973,501,310
Average of March, April, May Spending: $23,334,110
Grantee Spending Status: On Pace

NOTE: On Pace = Spending greater than the monthly pace required to fully use the grant by target closeout date.

Research Resource:

FAQ No. 132    

Date: 6-13-2019 Updated: 6-13-2019 Subject: State Contractors

Tulane University , LSU, University of Louisiana at Lafayette did you receive your invitation to bid on what Executive Order Number JBE 2018 - 16 details?

Do you have copies of the discussions and first drafts?

"WHEREAS, Louisiana has invested and is continuing to invest significant resources toward creating organizations such as The Water Institute of the Gulf and university centers that build the state's strength as a unique, global leader in water management; and
"

Have you participated with the collection of data related to Mississippi River Basin Wide Modeling in the past decade with a group called "The Water Institute of the Gulf?"

Several Not For Profits, For Profits, and University Science Research groups may have been purposely excluded from grant awards published in Public Law 115-123.

Editors Note: Has the state of Louisiana and it's capital region taken economic development over collaborated scientific research between Not for Profits, Universities and For Profit organizations?

Modeling software developed by one university may share the same data as another and provides slightly different results. Modeling software such as Hurricane Tracking software often produces different results. They may be similar but no two data calculating applications seem to produce the same results. Many factors are included but are not important for this report. What is important is knowing that non technical, non science community individuals have lobbied for specific modeling software provided by a group that is located in a part of the state of Louisiana that is only interested in economic growth from the grant awards related to Public Law 115-123.


FAQ No. 131    

Date: 6-13-2019 Updated: 6-13-2019 Subject: Watershed

Let's first start off with some resources to bring you up to speed.

Then, in a article we'll share what one homeowner is doing in the southern state of Louisiana to fight against rusty ducts, dirt, moisture in the air and just plan cool sticky inside the home. Enough, we're not from the stone age, let's work the science of building.

Resources to read:

FAQ No. 130    

Date: 6-9-2019 Updated: 6-9-2019 Subject: Construction

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