For immediate release: Sep 25, 2008
Posted by: [GOV]
Contact: Jane Jankowski
Phone: 317/232-1622

Disaster assistance centers added in Porter, LaPorte

INDIANAPOLIS - Two more state disaster assistance centers will open on Friday in LaPorte and Porter counties. The locations are:  

            152 Indiana Avenue

            Valparaiso

            1230 State Road 2 West

            LaPorte

The centers will be open starting tomorrow (Friday) from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. local time. Other days of operation are Saturday, Monday and Tuesday. Representatives from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the state Department of Workforce Development, Department of Health and Department of Insurance will be available at these two sites, in addition to staff from FSSA. Representatives can assist with questions about social services, including emergency food stamps, unemployment insurance, insurance policies and other issues.

Nearly one thousand people already have received help at the three Lake County assistance centers that opened today in Lake County to help victims of severe weather that occurred when the remnants of Hurricane Ike passed through Indiana on the weekend of September 13. The Lake County locations are: former Maruszczak Appliance store, 9450 Calumet Avenue, Munster; VFW, 2750 Central Avenue, Lake Station; and Ivy Tech Community College, 1440 East 35th Avenue, Gary. In Gary, emergency food stamp distribution is taking place at the Gary Career Center, 1800 East 35th Avenue.

The state was notified Tuesday that the federal government had declared a major disaster for Lake, Porter and LaPorte counties and approved federal individual assistance for affected residents.

Computers and phones to apply for FEMA assistance are available at the disaster centers, but it is not necessary to come to a center to complete one. Residents and business owners who sustained losses in the three counties can register online at http://www.fema.gov/assistance or call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for the hearing and speech impaired. The toll-free telephone numbers operate from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. local time.

FEMA 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.

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