Governor Terry Branstad today issued a “proclamation of disaster emergency” for those counties where severe weather on Sunday damaged homes and businesses and toppled trees and power lines.
The roof was ripped off an apartment building in the Benton County town of Vinton. Pami Erickson, with the Red Cross chapter in Cedar Rapids, says they’re helping dozens of Vinton residents. Eleven people stayed in a Red Cross shelter set up in the Vinton High School Sunday night.
“We also supply clothing and food,” Erickson said. “We have a client assistance card and they can use that card for shelter, food, and clothing. If they’ve lost any prescription medicines or eyewear, we’ll supply assistance for that as well.” A National Weather Service storm survey team has determined the damage in Vinton was caused by an EF2 tornado, with top speeds of 135 miles an hour. In addition to the destruction to the apartment building, the twister damaged several homes in Vinton.
The disaster emergency proclamation allows the use of state resources for recovery efforts and activates the Iowa Individual Assistance Program for Benton and Wright county residents. That program provides grants of up to $5,000 for households that meet certain income requirements.
The grant application and instructions are available on the Iowa Department of Human Services website.