Dec 23, 2009 5:34 PM by Rob Kirkpatrick
NEW ORLEANS - The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced today that the Governor's request for a 12-month extension to the Direct Assistance provided for temporary housing has been granted for eligible hurricane Ike and Gustav individuals and families. The program was originally slated to end March 2010 but has been extended until March 1, 2011.
"This extension will allow remaining survivors still living in FEMA-provided housing more time to complete the successful transition into permanent housing," said FEMA Regional Administrator Tony Russell. "We are making every effort to support the state of Louisiana by assisting individuals and families as they determine long term housing solutions to fulfill their needs."
In response to hurricane Ike and Gustav, a total of 639 temporary housing units (mobile homes and park models) were provided to Louisiana residents. Roughly 450 units still remain in use.
Under FEMA policy, extensions in temporary housing assistance beyond eighteen months may include the collection of rent from those survivors still residing in temporary housing units. No rent will be collected before the beginning of the extension period. Any rent that is collected will be based on a combination of factors, including the financial ability of each household as determined on a case by case basis, and will not exceed the community based fair market rental rates as determined by the Department of Housing and Urban Development. FEMA will work closely with the state in the coming weeks to determine how best to implement this extension in a way that meets the shared goal of helping survivors move into safe, permanent housing solutions, including determining the details and timetable of rent collection.
FEMA continues to provide eligible applicants the opportunity to purchase their temporary housing unit through a sales program. FEMA also continues to offer a donation program to states, including tribal territories, local governments, and voluntary organizations for the sole purpose of providing temporary housing to eligible applicants.
FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.