Due to limited funding available, the initial amount for each county has been reduced from prior disaster programs.
Scioto County will be allocated $55,000 in Temporary Assistance for Needy Families funding to provide disaster assistance to eligible families and $11,000 in non-TANF funds to serve eligible elderly or disabled individuals impacted by the severe winter storms of last week.
Applications are being processed at the SCDJFS office at 710 Court Street in Portsmouth.
The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services reserves money in the TANF funding for counties where there is a declared state of emergency by the Governor.
To be eligible for up to $500 in TANF disaster assistance, families must include a child or a pregnant woman and have a monthly income at or below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Guidelines.
Income eligibility is based on verification of household income for the past 30 days from the application.
That would mean a family of four could have a monthly gross income of no more than $3,675 to qualify under the PRC program.
"We can also provide assistance to those people without children who have economic storm-related needs," SCDJFS Director Sharon Mundhenk said. "Adult Disaster Assistance Funds will be available to provide a one-time cash payment up to $500 to elderly (age 55 and older) and disabled individuals without a minor child, and whose income is at or below 200 percent of the FPG. For one adult that would be a monthly income of $1,805."
Mundhenk said it should be noted that there can only be one disaster-related payment per dwelling. Applicant addresses will be cross-referenced to guarantee that the most money goes to the most people in need, Mundhenk said.
"The scope of services are the same for both affected groups," Mundhenk said.
According to Mundhenk, scope of service includes money for rent/deposit should the home be declared uninhabitable by another agency; up to $200 for alternate heat source; up to $100 for the replacement of food; and up to the maximum benefit for repairs to the basic structure of the home. Homeowner's insurance will be taken into consideration.
Applications are available now in the lobby of the SCDJFS office on Court Street or can be mailed to people by calling the Assistance Hotline at (740) 355-8932 or (740) 355-8866.
Mundhenk said the program will run through close of business on Feb. 28, 2009 contingent on funding.
Applicants must bring with them a completed Disaster Assistance Application, picture ID of applicant, verification of income for the past 30 days, proof of ownership (such as deed, current property tax statement, etc.), proof of homeowner's insurance and deductible, estimate and photos for repair to damaged structure. If requesting food replacement funds bring in all receipts or a signed statement specifying loss is required. Verification of receipts is also required for alternate heat source reimbursement.
"There will be designated workers seeing 'Winter Storms' applicants only," Mundhenk said. "We will try to make this as painless a process as possible."
Frank Lewis may be reached at (740) 353-3101, Ext. 232.