The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has granted a request to extend the registration period for Iowa disaster assistance which had been set to end Wednesday. Residents of the 35 counties included in the disaster declaration will now have until November 12th to register for individual assistance.
The state had already announced that the deadline to sign up for disaster unemployment benefits has been extended for 34 of the counties. Iowa Workforce Development spokesperson, Kerry Koonce, says the state asked for the extension to November 1st. Koonce says they have still had a lot of people coming in and asking about filing, so they wanted to extend the time to be sure everyone had time to file. She says disaster unemployment is filed a little bit differently, particularly if you are a business owner or farmer, and it can take some extra time.
Koonce says the disaster unemployment expands those covered by unemployment because of the special circumstances of the disaster. She says it’s open to more individuals, for example, farmers and business owners cannot normally get unemployment, but they are eligible under the disaster guidelines. Koonce says the disaster unemployment helps those who have lost wages due to the disaster.
Koonce says the disaster benefits are figured the exact same way as the regular unemployment benefits, and requires farmers for example to show tax records to show their previous wages. Monroe County was added to the disaster list after the other 34 counties and the disaster unemployment deadline for Monroe is November fourth.
The other counties included in the disaster unemployment and registration extension are: Appanoose, Black Hawk, Cherokee, Clayton, Decatur, Delaware, Dubuque, Fayette, Franklin, Hamilton, Howard, Humboldt, Ida, Jackson, Jasper, Jones, Kossuth, Lee, Lucas, Lyon, Mahaska, Marion, O’Brien, Osceola, Polk, Ringgold, Sioux, Story, Taylor, Union, Wapello, Warren, Webster, and Wright.
You can register for assistance from FEMA by calling 800-621-FEMA (3362). Flood survivors may register for assistance online anytime at www.disasterassistance.gov. You can sign up for disaster unemployment by contacting your local workforce development office, or find out more on-line at:www.iowaworkforce.org.