New information released in Butler County Flood recovery - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

New information released in Butler County Flood recovery

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BUTLER COUNTY (KWWL) -

The Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management Department released the following letter about flood recovery in Butler County.

The update includes a town hall meeting set for Tuesday, October 25th at 7:30 p.m. at the North Butler Elementary in Allison, where residents with flood damage can learn more about the assistance options available to them.

Butler County Flood Recovery Update

DES MOINES – With the recent flood events in Butler County, many citizens have asked if FEMA or other federal assistance for homeowners is going to be made available. Most of these programs are triggered by a Presidential Disaster Declaration. The primary program under this declaration is the FEMA Individual Assistance Program.

There are several factors used to determine whether or not a Presidential Disaster Declaration for Individual Assistance should be approved. These factors include (but are not limited to) concentration of damage, insurance coverage, and the degree of trauma to the state and local communities. Also, for a “medium-sized” state like Iowa, the average number of homes necessary for a declaration, that are estimated to be destroyed or that have suffered major damage, is about 582 homes.

In this most recent flood, local authorities across nine counties identified 504 homes and businesses that were impacted by the flood. Of those, 79 were determined to have been destroyed or suffered major damage that was not covered by insurance. Unfortunately, this level of reported damage is well below that needed to request a Presidential Disaster Declaration.

When damage information is compiled and does not meet the criteria for a state to receive a Presidential Disaster Declaration for Individual Assistance, the State does have other options. The governor may request a Small Business Administration Physical Disaster Declaration. The criteria for receiving an SBA disaster declaration is much less stringent – generally, 25 homes and businesses need to be destroyed or have major damage to receive this declaration. Qualifying residents in the counties surrounding a declared county are also eligible to receive SBA assistance. The SBA loan program that is available is the same program that is available via a Presidential Disaster Declaration for Individual Assistance.  

Gov. Terry Branstad requested such a designation on Oct. 6, 2016, for Butler County, which the SBA granted on Oct. 12. The declaration covers Butler County and the contiguous counties of Black Hawk, Bremer, Cerro Gordo, Chickasaw, Floyd, Franklin, Grundy, and Hardin.

The SBA has opened a Disaster Loan Outreach Center in Greene at the North Butler Elementary School Media Center for individuals and businesses to make application. This center will be open until 6 p.m. on Oct. 25. Application may also be made through the SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applications will be accepted until Dec. 12, 2016

The federal Individual Assistance program is administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and is activated when a Presidential Disaster Declaration for Individual Assistance is made.

Disaster Assistance Town Hall Meeting

For homeowners, renters, and business owners in Butler County who still have questions or need assistance, there will be a town hall meeting where officials from various State of Iowa agencies and FEMA will be available to answer questions about the disaster recovery process. The meeting will take place next Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. at the elementary school in Allison.

Disaster Assistance Town Hall Meeting

North Butler Elementary School

513 Birch Street

Allison, Iowa 50602

Tuesday, Oct. 25, 7:30 p.m.

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