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Green Country residents begin FEMA assistance process

Posted at 10:00 PM, Jun 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-14 23:25:10-04

SAND SPRINGS, Okla. -- The flood may be gone but the recovery process is just beginning for many Green Country residents.

"This is a daunting process for a lot of people so we’re here to support them in that," said Scott Sanders, FEMA Media Relations Specialist.

Having your home damaged in a flood is bad enough, but many residents affected by the flooding in May didn't have flood insurance.

"I never thought that was going to happen, it surrounds my house and it gets scary but it has never come into my house ever, this is the first time it’s ever come to the back of my house," said Jonnie Parnell, a Skiatook resident.

Parnell is one of the many homeowners coming into the FEMA Assistance Center in Sand Springs, wondering what to do first.

"People are here to help me, I don’t have to go through this alone, I live by myself and it’s just scary," said Parnell.

You can register online, but if you walk into one of the centers, there are representatives from FEMA and the Small Business Administration to walk you through the process.

"It can help with repairs to your home, help rebuild your home, temporary lodging and other needs assistance," said Sanders.

If you didn't register online, bring proof of residency and basic information about your property. The next step is to have an inspector come out and assess the damage. Officials say to keep an eye out for scammers.

"One of the biggest scams is contractors fly into town and promise that they’ll rebuild your house or clean out your basement and they get paid up front and you’ll never see them again," said Sanders.

What many don't know, is the SBA offers long term, low interest loans to help people recover. Plus, your business doesn't have to be physically harmed to get assistance.

"For example, a business that was cut off due to flooded road, but not flooded itself will also be eligible for cash flow loans if they’ve been economically impacted," said David Reetz, with the Office of Disaster Assistance for the SBA.

The centers in Sand Springs and Fort Gibson are open daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and will be here until the community's needs are met.

You can register for FEMA on this website, call 1-800-621-FEMA, or download the FEMA mobile app.

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