Joint Preliminary Damage surveys to begin next week
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Governor Bill Haslam today has asked the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to provide a joint preliminary damage assessment for impacted counties for federal assistance programs due to the recent tornadoes and flooding in those counties that began on Feb. 28, 2011.
“This process will be handled swiftly and as efficiently as possible,” said Gov. Haslam. “We will ensure that these counties and individuals receive all eligible assistance.”
The counties include: Fentress, Franklin, Grainger, Hamilton, Houston, Humphreys, Jackson, Jefferson, Knox, Moore, Pickett, Scott and Union.
Officials with the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) and FEMA will begin joint preliminary damage assessments on Tuesday, March 15.
The joint assessment will determine if the damage to individual households is sufficient to trigger federal assistance programs, such as Individual Assistance which provides help to households and private businesses. If sufficient, it would also provide access to low-interest loans through the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Disaster Loan program to individuals and businesses.
The assessment also determines whether state and local governments, and utilities in the affected counties can qualify for the federal Public Assistance program, which provides reimbursements for repairing and rebuilding public infrastructure, removing debris, and measures taken to protect lives and properties.
TEMA is responsible for reviewing the public assistance project applications from local governments, assessing the funding and making the payments to public assistance applicants.