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Yesterday, President Donald J. Trump declared that a major disaster exists in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands and ordered Federal aid to supplement Commonwealth and local recovery efforts in the areas affected by Super Typhoon Yutu beginning on October 24, 2018, and continuing.

The President’s action makes Federal funding available to affected individuals in the municipalities of Rota, Saipan, Tinian, and the Northern Islands.

Assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster.

Federal funding also is available to Commonwealth and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency protective measures in the municipalities of Rota, Saipan, Tinian, and the Northern Islands.  For a period of 30 days, assistance for emergency protective measures, including direct Federal assistance, is authorized at 100 percent of the total eligible costs.

Federal funding is also available on a cost-sharing basis for hazard mitigation measures throughout the entire Commonwealth.

Brock Long, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Department of Homeland Security, named Benigno Bern Ruiz as the Federal Coordinating Officer for Federal recovery operations in the affected areas.

Damage assessments are continuing in other areas, and additional areas may be designated for assistance after the assessments are fully completed.

Residents and business owners who sustained losses in the designated areas can begin applying for assistance tomorrow by registering online at or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA(3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for the hearing and speech impaired. The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. (local time) seven days a week until further notice.