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Many of my neighbors in Alamance County suffered major damage in the tornadoes and storms of April 16, 2011. They will be happy to learn that yesterday the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced federal financial assistance associated with damage from the April 16, 2011, tornadoes and storms will be extended to include Alamance County, NC. Here is the announcement:

RALEIGH, N.C. – Residents and business owners in Alamance County who sustained damage from the April 16 tornadoes and severe storms can now seek federal financial assistance to help them with repairs.

State and Federal Emergency Management Agency officials today announced that Alamance County has been added to the presidential disaster declaration.

“We know there are a number of families in Alamance County that need help recovering from these storms,” said state Emergency Management Director Doug Hoell. “Now those folks can seek help from the state and FEMA.”

Residents and business owners in Alamance County can register for Individual Assistance, which can include grants for homeowners and renters to help pay for temporary housing, home repairs and other serious disaster-related expenses. Low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) are available to homeowners, renters, nonprofit organizations and businesses of all sizes.

The deadline to register is July 5.

Registration can be done by calling FEMA’s toll-free registration number, 800-621-FEMA (3362). Callers with hearing or speech impairments can use the TTY line at 800-462-7585. The registration lines are available from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. An application may also be completed online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by smartphone at m.fema.gov.

FEMA’s housing assistance and Other Needs Assistance grants for medical, dental, and funeral expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. However, applicants who receive SBA loan applications must submit them to SBA to be considered for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses. Applicants who do not qualify for an SBA loan may be eligible to receive Other Needs Assistance grants for these items.

Twenty North Carolina counties are included in the disaster declaration for Individual Assistance: Alamance, Bertie, Bladen, Craven, Cumberland, Currituck, Greene, Halifax, Harnett, Hertford, Hoke, Johnston, Lee, Onslow, Pitt, Robeson, Sampson, Tyrrell, Wake and Wilson.

For more information about this disaster, go to www.nccrimecontrol.org and click on the red “April Tornadoes” tab. More information is also available at www.fema.gov.

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