Deadline is April 7 for public assistance requests

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

Only a few days remain until the April 7 deadline for California state and local agencies, tribal nations and certain private nonprofit agencies that may be eligible for federal and state disaster assistance to submit Request for Public Assistance forms to the California Emergency Management Agency.

Public assistance funds are available to eligible applicants as part of the federal disaster declaration of March 8, 2010 for the severe winter storms, flooding, debris and mud flows that occurred Jan. 17 through Feb. 6, 2010 in Calaveras, Imperial, Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Siskiyou Counties.

The primary goal of the Public Assistance Program administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and Cal EMA is to provide reimbursement for eligible expenses for emergency response as well as the repair and replacement of damaged public facilities.

Under the PA program, FEMA reimburses successful applicants for 75 percent of their eligible expenses, while the other 25 percent is the non federal share.

In California, Cal EMA pays 75 percent of the non federal share of eligible costs incurred by city and county agencies and special districts with local agencies picking up the remaining 25 percent.

State agencies, private nonprofits and tribal nations are responsible for the entire non federal share. The federal portion is paid directly to the state, which then makes disbursements to the local jurisdictions and organizations.

Under current law, applicants must submit RPAs to Cal EMA within 30 days of the federal major disaster declaration. For forms and more information on the Public Assistance Program and a local contact person call Cal EMA at (626) 431-3290.

April 7 is the deadline to submit RPAs.

FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.

The California Emergency Management Agency coordinates overall state agency preparedness for, response to and recovery from major disasters.

Cal EMA also maintains the State Emergency Plan, which outlines the organizational structure for state management of the response to natural and manmade disasters.