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FEMA reschedules meetings with fire survivors

Jamie Lusch / Mail TribuneFEMA will pay for hazardous debris cleanup in the Almeda fire zone.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has rescheduled in-person meetings with Jackson County fire survivors who have questions about their disaster-aid claims or who were denied benefits.

FEMA had previously planned to meet with survivors early this month but canceled appointments after the state categorized Jackson County as having extreme COVID-19 risk. The state has since moved the county into the high risk category.

The new in-person meetings are being rescheduled from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, May 14, and Monday, May 17, and from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, May 15, and Sunday, May 16, at the Phoenix Plaza Civic Center, 220 N. Main St.

More meetings are scheduled from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, May 21, and Monday, May 24, and from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, May 22, and Sunday, May 23, at the Talent Community Center, 104 E. Main St.

“The FEMA process can be confusing or difficult for survivors,” said Jackson County Emergency Operations Center Director John Vial. “We are grateful that FEMA is rescheduling these in-person meetings and taking the extra effort to reengage with survivors and assist them through this process.”

Fire survivors with questions about their applications can also call the FEMA Helpline at 1-800-621-3362. Press 2 to reach Spanish-speaking operators. Phone lines are open from 4 a.m. to 7 p.m. Pacific time. Information is available at www.disasterassistance.gov as well.