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Governor Signs Disaster Declaration, Funds Available For Those Affected By January Tornado

State emergency assistance funds have been made available for residents in Catawba, Alexander, Burke, Caldwell, Iredell and Lincoln counties affected by the January 9 EF-1 tornado. Through this assistance, state-funded grants are available to eligible individuals and families located within the emergency area who do not qualify for a disaster loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

On Wednesday (February 7), Governor Roy Cooper signed a Type I state disaster declaration for individual assistance for Catawba County and contiguous counties that suffered damage from the tornado. The Governor’s Order authorizes state-funded disaster assistance in the form of grants to eligible individuals and families located within the emergency area. This disaster declaration expires sixty days after issuance.

Following a state of emergency declaration from Catawba County, a preliminary damage assessment conducted by local and state emergency management officials found the damage exceeded the criteria established for the Small Business Administration Disaster loan program.

Residents may begin the application process at the SBA Disaster Loan Outreach Center located at Catawba County Emergency Services, 100 Government Drive in Newton. The Center will be open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays-Fridays and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays. The Center will be closed on Monday, February 19 for Presidents Day but will reopen for a final day on Tuesday, February 20 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Residents are encouraged to apply now and bring all the documentation they currently have from the following list, even if some of the required documentation is not yet available:

Proof of home/vehicle ownership, such as a deed, tax record or vehicle registration
Proof of residence, such as a utility bill or the front page of a bank statement
Proof of home/auto insurance, such as the declaration page
Copy of driver’s license or state ID
Copy of Social Security card
Two (2) estimates of physical damage (homeowners only)
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