Holt: FEMA Individual Assistance Expanded for Residents in Mercer, Hunterdon Counties


U.S. Rep. Rush Holt is urging all Mercer and Hunterdon County residents affected by Hurricane Sandy to register with FEMA by calling 1-800-621-3362.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has expanded the major disaster declaration for the State of New Jersey to include Mercer and Hunterdon. Residents in Mercer and Hunterdon counties may now apply for the individual assistance program assistance to help recover from Hurricane Sandy.

This will allow individuals, families and business owners affected by the storm to register for FEMA disaster assistance. Previous declarations made municipalities in every county eligible for FEMA assistance to assist with emergency work and the repair or replacement of disaster-damaged facilities.

“Just after Sandy hit our region, I sent a letter to President Obama requesting such a declaration,” Holt said. “When I toured affected areas with Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano on November 4, I re-emphasized the need for speedy action on the declaration. I’m pleased FEMA has responded. Eligible citizens in Hunterdon and Mercer counties can now apply for Individual Assistance funds to help them begin the rebuilding process.”

Monmouth, Middlesex and Somerset counties were declared eligible last week.

FEMA’s Individuals and Households Program has two provisions of assistance for “housing needs” and “other than housing needs,” which are available to individuals and families whose property has been damaged or destroyed as a result of a federally-declared disaster, and whose losses are not covered by insurance.

In addition to being in an area that is a federally-declared disaster area, to receive FEMA aid residents must file a claim with their insurance company and apply for FEMA assistance in one of three ways: online at DisasterAssistance.gov, via smartphone at m.fema.gov, or by phone at 1-800-621-3362 (TTY: 1-800-462-7585 for people with speech or hearing disabilities). Holt urged affected and eligible residents to apply immediately.

“The sooner you apply, the sooner you get the help you need,” Holt said. “I am in daily contact with FEMA on behalf of my central New Jersey constituents and will assist any district resident who encounters problems registering with FEMA or getting accurate, timely updates on the status of their disaster assistance application. Should you require such assistance in dealing with FEMA, call me at 609-750-9365.”