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Individual and public FEMA assistance granted for South Mississippi

Published: Oct. 25, 2021 at 4:52 PM CDT
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BILOXI, Miss. (WLOX) - Over the weekend, President Joe Biden granted a Major Disaster Declaration for Mississippi after Hurricane Ida ripped through the state about two months ago.

Amite, Claiborne, Copiah, Covington, Franklin, George, Hancock, Harrison, Jackson, Jefferson, Jefferson Davis, Lawrence, Lincoln, Pearl River, Pike, Simpson, Walthall, Wayne, and Wilkinson counties have been granted public assistance for local governments and eligible private nonprofits for costs of emergency work and repairs/replacements of facilities damaged from Ida.

Amite, Hancock, Harrison, Jackson, Pearl River, Pike, Walthall, and Wilkinson counties were granted individual assistance for residents and businesses to help pay for temporary housing, home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses and other programs to help with recovery efforts.

“That’s great news for anyone that received damage due to Hurricane Ida,” said MEMA Director of External Affairs Malary White.

So far, White said 207 Mississippians have already applied for assistance through disasterassistance.gov. People looking to apply would have to provide key documents like social security numbers, deeds, insurance and any videos/photos of storm damages.

The deadline to apply is Dec. 22.

“It could be anywhere from 7-10 business days before they start seeing possibly money in their accounts, maybe a little bit longer depending on the information FEMA needs from you,” White said.

It’s a familiar process for many on the Coast, but there are still challenges, like dealing with the aftermath of last year’s hurricane season.

“We just are doing our 15th or 16th roof with Hurricane Zeta,” said Mercy Housing & Human Development Executive Director Julie Egressy.

The organization has been helping families in the area rebuild after the storms, which is a more difficult task with a spike in supply cost and the high demand for contractors.

“They’re just busy and not as many,” Egressy said.

Mercy Housing is now preparing to help more families through the application progress and hand out more funds through grants for homes battered by Ida, but they want more people to be educated in what to do before and after natural disasters and other crises.

“We want our coast to recover and bounce back from whether it be the pandemic, whether it be Zeta, whether it be Ida,” Egressy said.

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