Applicant Briefings Conducted for July Storms

RELEASE DATE: Oct 21, 2021

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Nebraska Emergency Management Agency’s public assistance unit carried out six applicant briefings, four in-person and two virtual, the week of Sept. 20-24 to begin the recovery process for a new federally declared disaster for the State of Nebraska.

Disaster 4616 DR-NE was declared on Sept. 6 for 14 counties within the state as a result of a series of severe storms and straight-line winds experienced July 9-10. These storms caused more than $30 million in damages throughout the state.

State Public Assistance Officer Patrick Conway led each of the meetings to inform potential applicants of the laws, policies and procedures governing Federal Emergency Management Agency’s public assistance program. The in-person applicant briefings were held in Aurora, Madison, Papillion and Omaha. In order to guarantee equity of access to the information, two virtual applicant briefings were held for those applicants that were too far from the in-person briefings or for those who have not been able to return to the office due to the pandemic.

Members of Conway’s public assistance team and members from the hazard mitigation team were also available at each meeting to answer applicant questions about different aspects of the public assistance program as well as provide technical assistance with setting up accounts in Grants Portal for applicants who had not done so yet.

Applicant briefings are an important first step of the public assistance program for both NEMA and its local partners. They help set the tone for the recovery process and introduce local stakeholders to the NEMA team members who will be assisting them throughout their recovery and help them build back stronger.

“Through these applicant briefings, NEMA demonstrates its commitment to its local partners and stakeholders through the entire emergency management cycle,” Conway said.

Pictured below: Hazard Mitigation Specialist Marisa Alvares helps applicants sign in and hands them their red folders before the applicant briefing in Papillion.

State Public Assistance Officer Patrick Conway answers applicant questions during the applicant briefing in Papillion.

Deputy State Hazard Mitigation Officer Lexy Hindt informs applicants in Papillion about the Hazard Mitigation program to help applicants build back stronger.