Raleigh, N.C. — Gov. Pat McCrory on Wednesday issued a state disaster declaration for the flash flooding that struck the Chapel Hill area two weeks ago, freeing up financial assistance for flood victims.
McCrory put in a request to the U.S. Small Business Administration for disaster aid last week. Wednesday's declaration will allow those who don't qualify for SBA loans to seek state funds to help them recover.
Storms dumped almost 5 inches of rain on the Chapel Hill area in a few hours on June 30. Local and state damage assessment teams condemned dozens of properties and noted that dozens more sustained water damage.
“The storms that moved through Orange County and surrounding areas caused severe damage to many communities,” McCrory said in a statement. “While I’m inspired by the resilience of those who have been impacted, we want to make all resources available for recovery efforts.”
Orange was the only county that met the threshold for SBA assistance, but residents and business owners in Alamance, Caswell, Chatham, Durham and Person counties can also apply for the federal assistance since they are in adjoining counties.
“We’re going to do everything we can to help residents in these communities recover as quickly as possible,” Secretary of Public Safety Kieran Shanahan said in a statement.
Recovery teams from the SBA and North Carolina Emergency Management will be at the SBA disaster outreach center at University Mall in Chapel Hill to help people complete applications, explain the process and answer questions, Shanahan said.
The outreach center will open at noon Friday and will remain open until 6 p.m. It also will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday and from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. next Monday through Thursday.
Loans up to $200,000 are available through the SBA to homeowners to repair or replace damaged or destroyed structures. Homeowners and renters also are eligible for loans up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged or destroyed personal property, including clothing and appliances.
Businesses and nonprofit organizations may borrow up to $2 million for physical damage. Working capital loans are also available to small businesses and most nonprofits.
Individuals and business owners unable to visit the outreach center can apply via the SBA Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 or apply online.