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Vermont’s recovery from July’s disaster progresses steadily

October 19, 2023

Ninety days on from after Vermont’s disaster declaration

Residents continue to recover with the help of over $78.3 million in federal assistance. This funding, following July’s severe storms, flooding, landslides, and mudslides, comes from both FEMA and the US Small Business Administration (SBA).

Individual assistance boosts Vermont’s recovery

Residents from nine Vermont counties are now eligible for Individual Assistance.

These counties are Caledonia, Chittenden, Lamoille, Orange, Orleans, Rutland, Washington, Windham, and Windsor. Affected homeowners and renters have until October 31, 2023, to apply.

Vermont’s recovery measures include (as of 13 October)

Over $21.7 million from FEMA’s Individual and Households Program has been awarded to the eligible residents. This includes: Over $20 million for housing grants and more than $1.6 million in Other Needs Assistance grants.

The National Flood Insurance Program has cleared $33.1 million in claims.

The SBA has approved $23.6 million across 495 disaster loans. The last day to apply for a physical damage loan from SBA is October 31, 2023.

Meanwhile, the deadline for economic injury applications is set for April 15, 2024. State and FEMA operated 14 Disaster Recovery Centers, with two still open in Washington and Windsor counties.

In total, these centers have received 3,714 survivor visits. No prior appointment is necessary for these centers.

Moreover, FEMA’s Disaster Survivor Assistance teams have helped over 12,500 residents, covering 19,400 households and 1,070 businesses.

FEMA emphasizes inclusive assistance, ensuring everyone gets the aid they need, with support available in multiple languages.

Public assistance for Vermont counties

All counties in Vermont are now eligible for FEMA’s Public Assistance program.

This program helps with disaster-related costs like debris removal, protective measures, and facility repair.

Every Vermont county is designated for protective emergency measures.

Counties like Addison, Bennington, and Caledonia, among others, have been approved for a wider scope of assistance.

As of October 12, 210 applicants have submitted requests for 685 projects through the Public Assistance program.

The role of the US Small Business Administration

FEMA often directs survivors to the SBA for low-interest disaster loans. Recognized as the largest federal source for disaster-recovery funds, SBA plays a crucial role in supporting survivors.

Their disaster loans aim to encourage more resilient rebuilding.

For loan applications, visit the SBA’s official website or call their helpline.

FSJA Comment

The extensive aid provided to Vermont showcases the collaborative efforts of federal agencies like FEMA and SBA in assisting disaster-affected regions.

The prompt and structured response emphasizes the significance of pre-emptive disaster preparedness, coupled with robust post-disaster recovery frameworks.

This combined approach ensures communities can rebuild more resiliently, safeguarding against future calamities.

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