June flood victims in Wayne, Washtenaw county have until Sept. 13 to apply for federal aid

Charles E. Ramirez
The Detroit News

Residents of Wayne and Washtenaw counties affected by flooding from last month's storm have until Sept. 13 to apply for federal aid, government officials said Wednesday.

"That is the deadline for FEMA," said Michelle Gonzalez, an emergency management and recovery specialist with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which provides financial support and services to eligible individuals affected by disasters.

More:FEMA teams deploy to flood-damaged homes in Wayne and Washtenaw counties

Julie Garrett, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Small Business Administration, said Sept. 13 is also the deadline for getting help from her agency. The SBA provides low-interest loans to private nonprofit organizations, homeowners and renters affected by disasters. 

Gonzalez and Garrett made the remarks about the upcoming deadline during a virtual town hall meeting Wednesday organized by U.S. Rep. Brenda Lawrence.

Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence hosts a virtual FEMA disaster relief town hall.

The purpose of the meeting was to answer questions and concerns about federal assistance for residents of Wayne and Washtenaw counties whose homes were damaged by flooding last month, according to Lawrence's office. The virtual meeting lasted about an hour.

It comes about a week after President Joe Biden declared late June's damaging rains and flooding in southeast Michigan a major disaster, making federal funding available federal funding to affected individuals in Wayne and Washtenaw counties.

"Our objective is to bring you the resources that you need, and make sure that you're aware of what you are entitled to," said Lawrence, the Southfield Democrat. "I'd like to say that today is all hands on deck and help is on the way."

Lawrence was joined by Lt. Gov. Gilchrist, representatives of FEMA and the SBA, and Wayne County's Homeland Security & Emergency Management team. A recording of the meeting was posted on the representative's Facebook page.

Gilchrist said he and Gov. Gretchen Whitmer understand residents' concern and frustration with trying to recover from the flooding.

"We understand deeply that this damage is physical, it's emotional, psychological, and especially given the the pain and sometimes frustration that comes with having to deal with multiple government agency processes to clean up your home or recover, to take care of your businesses we know it's a lot," he said. "We want everyone impacted to know that, and that we have their backs."

Lt. Governor Gilchrist speaks during a a virtual FEMA disaster relief town hall with hosted by Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence.

Between the night of June 25 and the morning of June 26, some parts of southeast Michigan saw as much as 7 inches of rain over a 12-hour period — prompting a state emergency declaration from Whitmer that's in place until Saturday.

Officials said the storm resulted in two deaths: an 87-year-old man who died after falling in his flooded basement and a 40-year-old utility worker who died June 29 in Detroit while responding to power outages.

Earlier this month, federal and local officials said the heavy rains and flooding caused major damage to 194 homes, minor damage to 1,632 homes and affected another 155 homes.

To apply for aid, residents should register online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling (800) 621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for the hearing and speech impaired 7 a.m.-9 p.m. seven days a week.


Twitter: @CharlesERamirez