Intergovernmental Affairs Advisory Hurricane Irma


Intergovernmental Affairs Advisory

Hurricane Irma

Operational update (IA numbers as of COB 9/27/17)

  • Incident period: 7 – 20, 2017
  • Charlton and Coffee counties approved for Individual Assistance (IA) Sept. 26. Camden, Chatham, Glynn, Liberty and McIntosh counties were previously approved for IA.
  • More than $1.6 million in advance payments issued to National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policyholders in Georgia.
  • More than 1,700 NFIP claims have been submitted in Georgia.
  • More than $4 million in grants approved for individuals and households to help with critical needs assistance, temporary rental assistance, and uninsured or underinsured damage and personal property losses sustained from Hurricane Irma. This includes:
    • More than $1.6 million in temporary rental assistance
    • More than $900,000 in housing repair assistance
    • Nearly $1.5 million in other needs assistance, including Critical Needs Assistance
  • More than 12,000 individuals or households in counties designated for Individual Assistance have contacted FEMA for assistance or information on disaster recovery
  • 658 disaster survivors have visited three Disaster Recovery Centers in Camden, Chatham and Liberty counties seeking face-to-face assistance from state, FEMA, SBA and other recovery partners. The DRC in Liberty County is serving survivors in both Liberty and McIntosh counties.
  • 998 Individual Assistance inspections are completed of 2,361 issued.
  • 26 Disaster Survivor Assistance workers are canvassing affected neighborhoods in the designated counties, helping survivors register for FEMA assistance and providing referrals to other resources to help with any unmet
    • 2,542 total survivors reached
    • 2,730 homes visited
    • 212 survivors registered
  • The S. Army Corps of Engineers is providing technical assistance on debris removal to local officials in Georgia.
  • The S. Coast Guard is removing 37 vessels, 10 of which are sunken, in St. Marys.
  • Georgia Emergency Management Agency is conducting Public Assistance applicant briefings in Homer, Thomaston, Cartersville and Buford

Key Messages

Individual Assistance approved for Charlton and Coffee counties

  • Homeowners, renters and business owners in Charlton and Coffee counties can now begin registering with FEMA for disaster assistance for uninsured and underinsured damage and losses resulting from Hurricane Irma. The deadline to register with FEMA is Nov. 14, 2017.
  • Camden, Chatham, Glynn, Liberty and McIntosh counties were previously approved for Individual Assistance. Survivors in those counties should continue registering with FEMA if they haven’t already done so.
  • Ways to register:
    • The quickest way to apply for federal assistance is online at or through the FEMA mobile app.
    • Survivors may also apply by phone at 800-621-3362 (voice, 711 or VRS) or 800-462-7585 (TTY). Because of high demand, lines may be busy. Please be patient, and try calling in the morning or evening when call volume may be lower.

o  The toll-free numbers are open from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. ET, seven days a week.

  • Multilingual operators are available. Press 2 for Spanish and press 3 for other languages.
  • FEMA assistance is provided to help eligible hurricane survivors repair their homes to “safe, sanitary and secure” condition for the number of occupants living there. It also may provide for rental of temporary lodging until their home is habitable.
  • Survivors who receive help from the Red Cross or another organization are not automatically registered with FEMA. Until they receive their FEMA registration number, they are not registered and are not eligible for any
  • FEMA assistance will not affect your Social Security or other government benefits and is not considered taxable income by the

Disaster recovery centers

A Disaster Recovery Center is now open in Glynn County.

  • The Glynn County DRC is located at Ballard Park, 323 Old Jesup Road in Brunswick.
  • Hours are: Mon-Fri:   8 a.m. to 7 m.
  • Saturday: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday:                  1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Three other Disaster Recovery Centers are open serving disaster survivors in Camden, Chatham, Liberty and McIntosh counties.
  • Survivors do not need to go to a Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) to register with FEMA. In fact, we encourage survivors to register before visiting a DRC if possible.
  • DRCs are accessible facilities survivors can visit to speak face-to-face with representatives from the state, FEMA, SBA, and other recovery partners. Services available at the DRCs include:
    • Check on the status of your application,
    • Ask questions about a FEMA determination letter and how to appeal a decision by FEMA,
    • Get help applying for SBA disaster loans,
    • Ask questions about flood insurance and hazard mitigation
  • Hours of operation at the centers are: Mon-Fri: 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday:           1 p.m. to 5 m.


DRC Locations:

Glynn County

Ballard Park

323 Old Jesup Road Brunswick, GA 31520

Liberty and McIntosh counties

Liberty County Community Complex

9397 East Oglethorpe Hwy

Midway, GA 31320

Chatham County

Tybee Island YMCA Gym 202 5th Street

Tybee Island, GA 31328

Camden County

Camden County Recreation Center 1050 Wildcat Blvd.

Kingsland, GA 31548

Critical Needs Assistance (CNA)

  • Critical Needs Assistance is a one-time $500 payment per eligible household to help survivors with immediate or serious needs due to being displaced from their primary home by Hurricane Irma.
  • Critical needs are life-saving or life-sustaining items including, but not limited to: water, food, first aid, prescriptions, infant formula, diapers, consumable medical supplies, durable medical equipment, personal hygiene items and fuel for transportation.
  • Individuals or households may be eligible for Critical Needs Assistance if all of the following conditions have been met:
    • They have registered with FEMA;
    • The applicant passes identity verification;
    • At the time of registration, the applicant asserts that they have critical needs and requests financial assistance for those needs and expenses;
    • Their pre-disaster primary residence is located in a county that is designated for CNA; an
    • The applicant is displaced from their pre-disaster primary residence as a result of the disaster.
  • Survivors who have already registered with FEMA and who meet eligibility requirements for CNA will automatically receive Critical Needs Assistance via direct deposit or a check made payable to the eligible applicant as grants are processed. Critical Needs funding may take longer than usual to disperse due to the number of ongoing large-scale

Clean and Removal Assistance (CRA)

  • Clean and Removal Assistance is a one-time $500 payment per eligible household for primary residences that were damaged by Hurricane Irma but not rendered uninhabitable. This fixed amount represents the average cost of cleaning, sanitizing and removing carpet in the geographic area.
  • This assistance is intended to ensure contamination from floodwaters is addressed to prevent additional losses and potential health and safety concerns.
  • Individuals and households may be eligible for Clean and Removal Assistance if all of the following conditions are met:
    • The pre-disaster, primary residence is located in a county that is designated for Individual Assistance,
    • The applicant has at least one real property line item recorded with the cause of damage as “flood,”
    • The pre-disaster primary residence was not covered by flood or mobile home insurance at the time of the disaster, and
    • The applicant received a denial for home repair assistance from FEMA stating “Ineligible – Home is safe to occupy (IDD).
  • Individual property owners are responsible for performing or contracting for services to remove contaminants from and disinfect surface areas of their homes that have been affected by floodwater.
  • Survivors who have already registered with FEMA and who meet the CRA eligibility requirements will automatically receive Clean and Removal Assistance via direct deposit or a check made payable to the eligible applicant as grants are processed. Critical Needs funding may take longer than usual to disperse due to the number of ongoing large-scale

SBA Disaster Loans

  • The SBA offers low-interest, long-term disaster loans for homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes and private nonprofits.
  • After registering with FEMA, if you are referred to SBA, you should complete the loan application even if you do not plan to accept a loan. It is a step in the federal disaster assistance process.
  • If you do not qualify for a home loan, you may become eligible for grant assistance from FEMA.
  • You do not have to accept a loan if one is
  • Additional information on the disaster loan program may be obtained by:
    • Calling SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing)
    • Or by sending an email to
  • Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website at
  • Loan applications can be downloaded from
  • Completed applications should be returned to a recovery center or mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.
  • Businesses and nonprofits can apply up to $2 million to repair or replace disaster damaged real estate, machinery, equipment, inventory, and other business assets. Loans for working capital, known as Economic Injury Disaster Loans, are available to small businesses even if the business did not suffer any physical damage.
  • Homeowners can apply up to $200,000 to repair or replace disaster damaged real
  • Homeowners and renters can apply up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged personal property including automobiles.
  • The filing deadline to return applications for physical property damage is Nov. 14, 2017.
  • The deadline to return economic injury applications is June 15, 2018.

SBA Business Recovery Centers Open in Brunswick and Savannah

  • The SBA has opened two Business Recovery Centers in Chatham and Glynn counties to help businesses impacted by Hurricane Irma that began on 7, 2017.
  • SBA representatives at the centers can provide information about disaster loans, answer questions and assist businesses in completing the SBA application. The Center is located as indicated below and will operate until further notice.


Chatham County

Savannah Entrepreneurial Center

801 East Gwinnett Street Savannah, GA 31404


  • 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday – Friday
  • 9 a.m. – 1 p.m., Saturday
  • Closed Sundays


Glynn County

UGA Marine Extension & Georgia Sea Grant Center

715 Bay St.

Brunswick, GA 31520 Hours:

  • 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday – Friday
  • Saturday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
  • Closed Sundays


People with disabilities and other access and functional needs


Rumor Control

  • Rumors circulating on social media claim that survivors who were without power may be eligible for $250. This is FALSE.
  • Survivors who register with FEMA may be eligible for Critical Needs Assistance, Clean and Removal Assistance, or grants for temporary housing and home repairs, and other serious disaster-related needs, such as medical and dental expenses or funeral and burial costs.
  • These grants are not automatically dispersed upon registering with FEMA as eligibility must be determined for each applicant. Remember, only one person per household may apply with FEMA.
  • Visit for updated, accurate, information on disaster rumors and fraud.

NFIP Policyholders

  • Survivors who have flood insurance can access information through the National Flood Insurance Program’s “Hub page,”
  • If you have NFIP flood insurance and suffered damage during the recent floods related to Hurricane Irma, you may be eligible to receive up to $5,000 for building and contents damages prior to the adjuster’s inspection with a written, verbal, or electronic request.
  • If you have photos and receipts which validate your out-of-pocket expense, you may receive an advance payment up to $20,000. FEMA has increased the maximum amount from $10,000 to $20,000 with the updated bulletin.

Disaster Legal Aid

  • Survivors in Camden, Chatham, Glynn, Liberty and McIntosh counties who cannot pay for an attorney now have access to a disaster legal aid hotline.
    • You can request assistance by calling 866-584-8027 (toll free) or 404-527-8793 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
    • When you reach the hotline voicemail, leave your name and contact information, brief details of the disaster-related legal assistance needed and your county of residence.
    • Individuals who qualify for assistance will be matched with Georgia lawyers who have volunteered to provide free legal assistance.

American Red Cross

  • The American Red Cross is providing one-on-one casework and support at Service Centers in Savannah and Brunswick to further assist those with emergency needs.
  • The two Service Centers are open to residents whose homes suffered major damage because of the hurricane. Services may include recovery planning and assistance, health and mental health support, clean-up supplies and more.

·            All participants will be asked to provide proof of residence as part of the casework process.

  • Red Cross volunteers are also in affected communities this week delivering supplies and working with residents to address their emergency needs for lodging, food, health and emotional support.


  • Anyone in need of help should call the American Red Cross of Southeast and Coastal Georgia at 912-651-5300.

Red Cross Service Center in Savannah

Compassion Christian Church, Adult Ministries Center

55 Al Henderson Blvd., Savannah, GA 31419

Wednesday, September 20 through Friday, September 22, 2017

Open 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. daily

Red Cross Service Center in Brunswick

207 Rose Drive

Brunswick, Georgia 31520

Wednesday, September 20 through Friday, September 22, 2017

Open 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. daily


Approved FEMA Program Fact Sheets Available:


  • 15: Georgia received a federal major disaster declaration for Individual Assistance for Camden, Chatham and Glynn counties. All 159 Georgia counties were designated for debris removal from public property and emergency protective measures (Categories A and B), including direct federal assistance.
  • 18: Liberty and McIntosh counties were designated for Individual Assistance.
  • 26: Charlton and Coffee counties were designated for Individual Assistance.


Designated Counties

IA: Camden, Charlton, Chatham, Coffee, Glynn, Liberty and McIntosh counties.

PA: All 159 Georgia counties are eligible for categories A & B (emergency protective measures and debris removal from public property, including direct federal assistance) under the Public Assistance program.

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