– My food spoiled during a power outage, can I get reimbursed? MEMA does not provide reimbursement for food spoiling during a natural disaster. In certain disasters, SNAP recipients may receive replacement benefits by contacting the Mississippi Department of Human Services.
– My home was destroyed or damaged, where is my hotel voucher? MEMA does not provide housing vouchers. However, eligible residents may be able to participate in our Temporary Rental Assistance Program. To release funds for this program an SOE by the Governor or an Administrative Order by the Director of MEMA must be declared. Some of the eligibility requirements include, but are not limited to:
- Physical damage to the dwelling to the extent that it has been rendered uninhabitable for a period of [more] than three (3) days.
- Extended interruption of essential utilities sufficient to constitute a health hazard.
Applicants are also required to fill out an application. Additionally, assistance is based on the HUD Fair Market Rental Rates for the area. If approved, assistance will be provided no longer than 90 days. Applicants must agree to a recertification process as well.
If an applicant has insurance, they are not eligible for TRAP.
– Where can I get money to fix the damage to my home? Federal financial assistance is available to homeowners ONLY if a federal disaster declaration for Individual Assistance is approved by the president. Renters are not eligible for home repair assistance but may be eligible for other federal assistance. Federal financial assistance is never a guarantee. If you need immediate help finding a tarp for your roof call your county emergency management agency office.
– I need a generator for my home, can MEMA provide one? MEMA cannot provide generators to individuals or reimbursement for the purchase of a generator. In order to be considered for reimbursement for a generator purchased after a federally declared disaster, there must be an existing medical condition that requires you to have medical equipment/appliance for medical purposes. FEMA will need the following documentation to consider a reimbursement: a copy of the receipt of proof of purchase or rental for the generator, a letter from a physician on letterhead that indicates the required equipment is for medical purposes and an official letter from the electric company for the power outage.
– I need help repairing damage to my home. What do I do? First, take pictures of the damage for documentation purposes. Second, call your insurance provider to file a claim. Depending on the repairs needed, your county emergency management agency or MEMA’s Individual Assistance Bureau could be of assistance. Contact your local EMA for more information.
– I need a safe room for my home, does MEMA offer any grants? The Individual Safe Room program is closed due to the lack of funding. Local governments can apply for Hazard Mitigation Grants for public community safe rooms. For more information visit MEMA’s Mitigation page.
– I missed the FEMA deadline to apply for Individual Assistance, can I still apply? You must call FEMA’s disaster assistance helpline to discuss assistance: 800-621-3362
– FEMA is referring me to fill out an SBA Loan application why? During the FEMA Assistance process, you may be referred to the U.S. Small Business Administration for a potential loan. While your application is being processed, FEMA is evaluating your needs to see if you qualify for home repairs or other FEMA benefits. If you qualify for federal benefits FEMA will contact you. You may be eligible for additional benefits from FEMA by applying for an SBA loan.
– FEMA denied me assistance or I don’t agree with the amount I was awarded, what can I do? Write an appeal to FEMA. The appeal must be postmarked within 60 days of the date on the award or denial letter from FEMA. See the attached sample appeal letter.
– What can I purchase with my FEMA award? FEMA will inform you of the types of assistance you are eligible to receive. These may include home repairs, rental assistance for a different place to live temporarily, repair or replacement of a damaged primary vehicle, uninsured out-of-pocket medical expenses for an injury caused by the disaster. Repair or replacement of occupational specialized tools, essential educations materials and/or moving and storage expenses related to the disaster. If you do not spend the award on its intended purpose, you may be denied future assistance. In some cases FEMA will ask that the money be returned.
Every disaster is different. Federal and state assets will depend on the magnitude of each disaster.