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NEWS RELEASE

Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 7, 2007

Declaration Delivers Individual Assistance to Ottawa, Washington Counties

All Oklahomans in need of flood damage assistance urged to call toll free number

Federal disaster assistance is now available for those living in Ottawa and Washington counties who sustained damage due to severe storms and flooding. The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) toll-free application telephone number is now operational for those who suffered property damage or other losses. Call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) to apply for assistance. Those with speech or hearing impairment may call TTY 1-800-462-7585.

Individuals may also register at the FEMA web site, www.fema.gov.

In response to a request from Gov. Brad Henry, President Bush today signed a major disaster declaration designating Ottawa and Washington counties eligible for federal aid to help meet the recovery needs of residents and business owners. The Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management (OEM) urges Oklahomans statewide who are in need of assistance due to storm and flood damage to call the toll-free number and report their damages. OEM will monitor these calls and request additional counties be added to the declaration.

The declaration delivers a wide range of programs such as funding for temporary disaster housing assistance, U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) low-interest disaster loans for renters, homeowners and business owners to repair or replace damaged property, replacement grants for serious disaster-related needs and expenses not covered by insurance or other assistance programs.

When calling to apply, operators will need the following information from the applicant:

Current phone number;

Address at the time of the disaster and the address where the applicant is now staying;

Social Security number, if available;

A general list of damages and losses applicant suffered;

If insured, the name of the company or agent and the policy number;

General financial information; and,

Bank account coding information if the applicant wishes to speed up their assistance with direct deposit.

Individuals should not prejudge their eligibility, even if they don’t have all the information necessary or if it was lost in the floods. Individuals who already registered with the American Red Cross, Salvation Army or another voluntary agency or who have reported damage to county or local officials, still need to call FEMA’s toll-free number or register at www.fema.gov and apply for the federal and state assistance programs.

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