CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - President Barack Obama declared on Monday a major disaster exists in South Carolina and ordered federal aid to supplement state, tribal, and local recovery efforts in the area affected by severe storms and flooding beginning on Oct. 1 and continuing.
"The President's action makes federal funding available to affected individuals in the counties of Charleston, Dorchester, Georgetown, Horry, Lexington, Orangeburg, Richland, and Williamsburg," read a statement by the White House on Monday."Assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster."
Officials say federal funding also is available to the state and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work as a result of the severe storms and flooding in the counties of Berkeley, Charleston, Clarendon, Dorchester, Georgetown, Horry, Lexington, Orangeburg, Richland, Sumter, and Williamsburg.
Federal funding is also available on a cost-sharing basis for hazard mitigation measures statewide.
FEMA said that residents and business owners who sustained losses in the designated counties can begin applying for assistance tomorrow by registering online at http://www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA(3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for the hearing and speech impaired.
The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. (local time) seven days a week until further notice.
"W. Craig Fugate, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Department of Homeland Security, named W. Michael Moore as the Federal Coordinating Officer for federal recovery operations in the affected area," officials said."FEMA said that damage surveys are continuing in other areas, and additional counties may be designated for assistance after the assessments are fully completed."