Congressman Faleomavaega announced today that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has informed his office that it has amended its major disaster declaration and federal funds will now be authorized at 90% to help American Samoa recover from Tropical Cyclone Heta.
“Normally, the federal government pays 75% of the costs associated with major disasters but, in our case, the federal government has amended its policy and is increasing our assistance to 90% for the Public Assistance and Hazard Mitigation Grant programs and for Other Needs Assistance under the Individuals and Household Program,” Congressman Faleomavaega said. “As a result of this increase, our local cost share will be reduced from 25% to 10%.”
“These reductions in cost are effective as of the date of the President’s major disaster declaration which was issued on January 13, 2004. The FEMA funds being set aside by the federal government for American Samoa are to help our people and community recover from the high winds, high surf, and heavy rainfall associated with Tropical Cyclone Heta which occurred January 2-6, 2004.”
“Type of assistance includes help for individuals and households on the island of Tutuila and the Manu’a Islands. I am pleased with this increase and I encourage anyone who needs assistance to contact my office in Utulei or in Washington, DC,” the Congressman concluded.