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FEMA Extends Relocation Assistance Program for Displaced Residents
From: FEMA   Filed 8/19/08  GCN

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has extended the relocation assistance program created to aid families displaced by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Eligible expenses will be covered through March 1, 2009, which coincides with the end of the FEMA’s temporary housing program. Relocation Assistance offers families the opportunity to move their personal property out of their FEMA travel trailer or mobile home and into a rental property anywhere in the continental United States.

To be eligible for the program, the applicants must have been displaced from their primary residence in a disaster-declared area as a result of Katrina or Rita and have incurred, or will incur, relocation travel expenses within the defined period.

If returning to Mississippi, applicants must relocate to housing that is not provided by FEMA and is not a hotel or motel. For those families that are already living in Mississippi in FEMA travel trailers or mobile homes, FEMA will pay moving expenses to a FEMA-funded rental resource anywhere in the continental United States.

The program will reimburse eligible applicants for relocation expenses up to $4,000 that were incurred between Feb. 1, 2006 and March 1, 2009. Relocation expenses may not exceed the FEMA Individuals and Households Program cap and the applicant must not have received funds from any other state, federally, or voluntary agency subsidized travel-home program.

Through the relocation assistance program, FEMA has paid more than $17.5 million to applicants affected by Katrina and Rita. In the past six months, nearly 15,000 families have requested assistance through this program.

Relocation Assistance will be limited to travel costs including airfare, train, bus and/or a rental vehicle. Furniture transportation expenses also are eligible, including commercially rented equipment for hauling and commercially purchased moving materials or services. Mileage, gas and other travel-related expenses incurred while using a privately owned vehicle are not eligible costs. Moving costs for recreational or large luxury items such as boats or recreational vehicles are not eligible expenses under this program either.

For more information on FEMA’s Relocation Assistance program or to request reimbursement of relocation expenses, call 800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 800-462-7585 or the Mississippi Maintenance Call Center at 866-877-6075.

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