Gov. Dannel P. Malloy urged homeowners and businesses Thursday to register with the federal government for assistance with any storm related damages.
Already 6,000 Connecticut residents have registered with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and 900 businesses have registered with the Small Business Administration, but far more have been impacted by Hurricane Sandy.
As of last night, more than 292,607 disaster survivors from Connecticut, New York and New Jersey have applied for federal disaster assistance, and more than $277 million in Individual Assistance has been approved.
“It’s a good first step, but we have to do more,” Malloy said Thursday at a Capitol press conference.
He explained that it’s not just physical damage that is covered for businesses, but economic losses as well.
Private and nonprofit organizations may apply for a physical disaster loan of up to $2 million. Economic injury loans are also available for up to $2 million for all types of businesses. There’s also a good chance these loans will also be extended to businesses not in the affected four counties, but in other parts of the state not under the disaster declaration.
If they can relate their losses to the storm or if their business is dependent on businesses impacted by the storm in the four counties, Malloy said.
“I suspect we’ll probably have declarations in the not too distant future for some or all of the remaining counties in the state of Connecticut,” Malloy said.
The total amount of damages caused by the storm are still being calculated, but early estimates have reported it could be in the billions of dollars.
On Friday SBA Administrator Karen Mills will hold a conference call with Connecticut Chamber of Commerce organizations throughout the state to explain what assistance may be available to their members.
Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner Catherine Smith said they’ve heard from a handful of small business who have been unable to get back up and running since the storm hit Oct. 29. She said she’s directing them first to FEMA and SBA for assistance. The state has a small business loan program, but she urged business owners to check with the federal government first.
Malloy said he called the press conference to make sure the news of the federal assistance gets out there.
He urged people to register with FEMA online before going to the Disaster Recovery Center. There are eight recovery centers in the state.
He said applying online will streamline the process for both homeowners and businesses.
For more information please visit www.ct.gov/sandy .
The governor’s office has also created this fact sheet about how to apply for assistance.
At the moment only residents living or working in Fairfield, New Haven, Middlesex and New London counties are eligible to register.