Sacramento, California - Late yesterday, President Barack Obama added Calaveras County to the Presidential Disaster Declaration for the Valley and Butte Fires, two of the most destructive fires in California history.
On September 22, 2015, President Obama issued a major disaster declaration for the State of California, triggering the release of Federal funds to help residents in Lake County and Calaveras County recover from the Valley Fire and the Butte Fire that occurred September 9, 2015, and continuing.
"This fire season has been a history making in its impact on our state and these federal resources that the President's Disaster Declaration offers are going to be critical in the recovery process for our communities in Lake and Calaveras counties," said California Governor's Office of Emergency Services Director Mark Ghilarducci.
Anyone impacted by the Valley Fire and Butte Fire in Lake County and in Calaveras County should immediately register their household for FEMA and State assistance by calling FEMA's toll-free number at 1-800-621-3362 (FEMA). For those who use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 1-800-621-3362.
Operators will be on the phone to walk you through the registration process.
Registration is also available online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov and via the FEMA smart phone app at m.fema.gov.
We also encourage applicants to call their insurance agents to file a claim at the same.
The Individuals and Households Program provides financial help or direct services to those who have necessary expenses and serious needs if they are unable to meet the needs through other means.
The forms of assistance available can include: Housing Assistance and Other Needs Assistance (including personal property and other items) for eligible applicants. The process begins by registering with FEMA.
Disaster assistance from FEMA and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) may include grants and/or disaster assistance loans to help pay for temporary housing, home repairs and replacement costs.
Low-interest SBA disaster loans may be available to businesses of all sizes as well as certain private nonprofit organizations. Homeowners and renters are also eligible for SBA loans for losses not fully compensated by insurance or other payments and not duplicated by benefits from other agencies.
Registering with FEMA is required for federal aid, even if the person has registered with another disaster relief organization such as the American Red Cross, local officials or churches. Registrants with FEMA must use the name that appears on their Social Security card and will need to provide:
- Social Security number;
- Address of the damaged residence and proof the applicant lived there at the time of the disaster;
- Description of the damage;
- Information about insurance coverage;
- A current contact telephone number;
- An address where you can get mail; and
- Bank account and routing numbers (if you want direct deposit of any financial assistance).
Assistance from FEMA and other federal and state programs differs from household to household, depending on circumstances. Each case is treated individually, and every situation is different.
Most disaster aid programs are intended to meet only essential needs and are not intended to cover all your losses or make you whole. FEMA also encourages applicants to call their insurance agents to file a claim at the same time. FEMA assistance cannot duplicate insurance coverage.