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Central Texans now eligible for emergency aid through FEMA

Water delivered to Austin by FEMA on Friday. (Laura Figi/Austonia)

Residents in Central Texas counties are now eligible for individual emergency aid due to damage made by winter storms, the Federal Emergency Management Aid announced on Saturday.


Individuals and businesses from Bell to Bexar counties along the I-45 corridor as well as dozens of others throughout Central and East Texas can register online or call 1-800-621-3362 or 1-800-462-7585 TTY to apply for assistance.

"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," FEMA said in the statement.

In addition to individual assistance in some counties, FEMA is providing federal funding to state, tribal, eligible local governments and some private nonprofit organizations statewide. The funding will be given through cost-sharing for emergency protective measures and hazard mitigation measures across the state

The announcement comes after President Joe Biden approved a major disaster declaration across the state. Biden, who stated he considered visiting Texas during the storm but didn't want to "burden" its residents during mass power outages, may be traveling to the state next week.

FEMA has most recently contributed to the Austin water disaster by bringing in 1 million gallons of usable drinking water into the city from its Fort Worth distribution site Friday night. The city is expected to remain under a boil-water notice into next week. With many still lacking running water, the bottles provided by FEMA and others will be distributed to residents through a three-step distribution plan throughout the weekend.

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