Teams from two federal agencies will hold meetings in Nichols on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday to talk with people about recovering from the flooding caused by Hurricane Matthew.
The flooding forced the residents to leave their homes, and many of their houses and businesses were damaged or destroyed.
Specialists from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Small Business Administration will give tips and advice on a variety of topics.
The meetings will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day at Nichols Town Hall at 514 W. Mullins St. (U.S. 76).
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FEMA specialists in hazard mitigation will be available all three days to provide tips and advice on such topics as rebuilding techniques, how to replace damaged drywall and caulk windows, and the benefits of hurricane straps. The experts will answer questions about making homes stronger and safer, and how to protect houses from future disaster damage. Most of the information will be geared to do-it-yourselfers and general contractors.
Representatives of FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program will be available to answer questions on Tuesday and Wednesday only. These specialists can help with servicing claims, provide general information regarding policies and offer technical assistance to aid in recovery.
In addition, residents will be able to register for FEMA disaster assistance at the Nichols Town Hall sessions. FEMA disaster survivor assistance personnel will be there all three days to help with completing applications and to answer questions. Both renters and homeowners who had uninsured or under-insured losses from Hurricane Matthew may be eligible for federal disaster assistance.
Disaster assistance may include grants to help pay for temporary housing, home repairs, personal property replacement and serious disaster-related needs not covered by insurance or other sources.
FEMA’s partner in disaster recovery, the Small Business Administration, will also have staff available to help survivors and to answer questions. SBA offers low-interest disaster loans to businesses of all sizes (including landlords), nonprofit organizations, homeowners and renters.
Homeowners can get free reference booklets, in English and Spanish, on cost-effective rebuilding and repair techniques to make homes more resistant to natural disasters.
More information about strengthening property can be found at http://www.fema.gov/what-mitigation.