FEMA Urges You to Spend Disaster Funds Wisely
MONTGOMERY, Ala. – More than $17 million in federal assistance has been approved by the Federal
Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to help Alabama residents recover from the effects of
Hurricane Sally. Assistance is tax-free and grants do not have to be repaid. However, FEMA urges you
to use the funds quickly, wisely and only for disaster-related expenses.
FEMA will send you a letter listing approved uses if you were awarded a grant, including:
• home repairs (e.g., structure, water, septic and sewage systems)
• rental assistance for a different place to live temporarily
• repair or replacement of a damaged primary vehicle
• uninsured out-of-pocket medical expenses for an injury caused by the disaster
• repair or replacement of occupational specialized tools
• necessary educational materials (e.g., computers, schoolbooks, supplies)
• moving and storage expenses related to the disaster
• other disaster-related expenses
You may spend your FEMA grant in any way that helps you achieve the goal of permanent, safe, sanitary
and functional housing. Remember to keep your receipts for verification of how you spent the disaster
• Rental assistance grants provide for temporary housing when a disaster leaves your home
uninhabitable or inaccessible.
• As a homeowner or renter, you can choose to rent an apartment, house, mobile home or some
other temporary rental unit.
• If you intend to seek continued rental assistance, you will need receipts to show you used the grant
Disaster grants are not for regular living expenses, such as utilities, food, medical or dental bills not
related to the disaster, travel, entertainment or any discretionary expense not related to the disaster.
It is important to remember that federal law prohibits duplicating federal grants from other sources.
FEMA also encourages you to keep your receipts for three years to show how you spent funds.
When you get a letter from FEMA, read it carefully. If you have any questions, call the FEMA Helpline,
800-621-3362. TTY users can call 800-462-7585 6 a.m. to midnight central time, seven days a week.
For the latest information on Hurricane Sally, visit https://www.fema.gov/disaster/4563
FEMA’s mission: Helping people before, during, and after disasters.
Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age,
disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been
discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.
FEMA’s temporary housing assistance and grants for public transportation expenses, medical and
dental expenses, and funeral and burial expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan.
However, applicants who receive SBA loan applications must submit them to SBA loan officers to be
eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and