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OK on federal aid

Home and business owners in Bureau County can now apply for federal help in recovering from the torrential rains that drenched the county in mid-April.

On Wednesday, Gov. Pat Quinn announced Bureau and 13 other counties were approved for the aid. These counties were added to the 11 counties already approved for federal aid last week.

“This action will help speed assistance to people who suffered flood damages and help them begin rebuilding their lives,” Quinn said.

The request for federal help was supported by damage assessment documentation that identified 14 homes in the area that were destroyed and 202 that suffered major damage. Thousands of additional homes were also affected by the floods.

The federal disaster declaration makes assistance available to flood victims, including grants to individuals and households to help with temporary housing, home repairs or replacement and other disaster-related expenses, as well as low-interest SBA loans to residents and businesses.

Bureau County ESDA coordinator Kris Donarski was pleased with the announcement.

“We had so many people in our county with flooding in their basements,” she said. “Not just inches of water, but feet.”

To apply for assistance, residents should either register online at http://disasterassistance.gov, or call the Federal Emergency Management Agency at 800-621-3362, or 800-462-7585 (TTY).

Comment on this story at www.bcrnews.com.

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