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FEMA closing local disaster center tonight

Those who incurred flood loses will still be able to seek assistance

Published: Saturday, May 25, 2013 4:57 a.m. CDT

The FEMA Disaster Recovery Center in Morris will close at the end of the business day today, Saturday, May 25.

“There just wasn’t much action going on there and to set up a Disaster Recovery Center can be rather costly,” said Ken Higginbotham of Federal Emergency Management Agency’s external affairs.

The DRC located at the Morris Fire Protection and Ambulance District Station 2, 2301 Ashton Road, opened May 16. It will close at 7 p.m. Saturday.

It is not necessary to visit a DRC to register with FEMA for federal assistance for property damaged due to the April 18 flood. Although the centers will close, Illinois storm survivors can continue to register by phone or online through July 9.

Since a federal disaster has been declared, residents of Grundy County can be eligible to apply for grants and low-interest federal loans to help them recover. The centers have been opened throughout Illinoid to assist individuals who have registered and have further questions or issues.

Jim Lutz, Grundy County Emergency Management Agency director, said he was not concerned the center was closing because people can still register for financial assistance.

“The FEMA teams are still in the area and you can still register,” stressed Lutz.

The DRC in Fulton County was closed Friday.

Individuals can register online at www.disasterassistance.gov or via a web-enabled phone at m.fema.gov. Applicants may also call 1-800-621-3362 or (TTY) 1-800-462-7585. The toll-free numbers operate from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., seven days a week.

Be sure to contact FEMA if you change your mailing address, phone number or e-mail address, receive an insurance settlement, or discover additional damage.

“We still encourage people to register, we can’t stress that enough,” said Higginbotham. “Once they are in the system, they may be eligible for many, many other programs other than just the federal assistance.”

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