Today, President Donald J. Trump declared that a major disaster exists in the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and ordered Federal assistance to supplement Commonwealth and local recovery efforts in the areas affected by earthquakes beginning on December 28, 2019, and continuing.
The President’s action makes Federal funding available to affected individuals in the municipalities of Guánica, Guayanilla, Peñuelas, Ponce, Utuado, and Yauco.
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 the Commonwealth and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work in the municipalities of Guánica, Guayanilla, Peñuelas, Ponce, San Germán, and Yauco.
Pete Gaynor, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Department of Homeland Security, named Alexis Amparo as the Federal Coordinating Officer for Federal recovery operations in the affected areas.
Damage assessments are continuing in other areas, and more municipalities and additional forms of assistance may be designated after the assessments are fully completed.
Residents and business owners who sustained losses in the designated counties can begin applying for assistance tomorrow by registering online at http://www.DisasterAssistance.gov 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.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION MEDIA SHOULD CONTACT THE FEMA NEWS DESK AT (202) 646-3272 OR FEMA-NEWS-DESK@FEMA.DHS.GOV.