The Federal Emergency Management Agency has approved the request to add 44 counties in Iowa to the original 14 named to receive federal disaster assistance. FEMA spokesman Lew Wood says it brings to 58 the number of counties where residents who suffered storm damage and losses from rain, high winds and tornadoes a week and-a-half ago can apply for federal grants and low-interest loans for temporary housing, repairs and other needs.He says it was done because damage assessments resulted in a request for declaration of the additional counties. The agency has opened four temporary disaster recovery centers in Iowa and they’re open every day of the week between 7 A.M. and 7 P.M. Four have been operating for several days and he says it’s “very possible” more DRCs will be opened to help people filing a claim but he stresses “they don’t do it at the DRCs.” The only way to apply for assistance is to call 1-800-621-FEMA. Then they can go do a DRC, he says, to sit down with workers and learn more about state and federal disaster recovery programs, and what they might be eligible for. The DRC’s now in operation are located in Bradgate, National, Mason City and Independence.
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