FEMA DRC opens locally

By KALYN SHELLYThe Wilson PostThe FEMA Disaster Recovery Center (DRC) is now officially open at the Prime Outlets-Lebanon in Suite 273 located between the Beauty Express and the Dress Barn outlets. The center is available to provide assistance to people affected by the storms and flooding that started on April 30. The DRC is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week, until further notice.Disaster officials suggest that before visiting the center, people register online at www. DisasterAssistance.gov or call 800-621-FEMA or 800-462-7585 for those with speech or hearing disabilities. Help is available in all languages. Cesar Castillo, local DRC manager, said approximately 13 people have come by to receive help since the center's opening on Monday. He said about 354 homes and 150 businesses in the area were affected by the flood and they are available to "help as many people as they can." He added they also have a section dedicated to mitigation so they can "make their homes more livable and more secure for the future." Castillo noted, "We also offer assistance with rentals and hotels until these people can get back into their homes. FEMA is adding more DRCs every day to offer aid to the flood victims." U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) representatives will be at the Disaster Recovery Center to answer questions about low-interest disaster loans for homeowners, renters, businesses and private non-profit organizations. These loans are to repair or replace real estate and/or personal property damaged by the storms and flooding. In addition to the location at the Prime Outlets-Lebanon, there are 11 DRCs in Middle Tennessee and seven in West Tennessee.Staff Writer Kalyn Shelly may be contacted at kalyn@wilsonpost.com.