Anyhow, below is my reply. Somebody that read this blog did some good. I am happy to report that Cindy Burkett's office has already called me. A friend of mine is communicating with Texas Rep. Ms. Button's office.
See my response to FEMA below FEMA's email. There might be some good contact info in FEMA's email.
You've just received a new submission to your Contact Form.
Good day Mr. Miller,
I came across your blog post today and there are several points I feel require a response. Our hearts go out to everyone who lost property and loved ones because of the tornadoes. But there are several elements of the disaster assistance declaration process and FEMA’s role in disaster recovery that you may be missing.
In order to receive supplemental federal assistance from FEMA, the incident must exceed the capabilities of the state and local governments, disaster relief organizations, and compensation by insurance for disaster-related losses.
There is a process that must be adhered to and indeed that was done here in Texas. First, county officials must inform the state that they would like to seek federal assistance. The state will then request Preliminary Damage Assessments. Joint state-FEMA Preliminary Damage Assessments were conducted in the counties encompassing Rowlett.
You may want to speak with someone from the Texas Division of Emergency Management for details of their request for Individual Assistance. The state has 30 days from the date of the determination letter from FEMA officials in Washington to appeal the decision, providing additional or new data to support the request for Individual Assistance.
Additionally, I am asking you to please remove the name and contact number of the FEMA employee you posted on your website. That FEMA employee has nothing to do with the disaster declaration process and is not involved in responding to the North Texas storms.
Also, I, Debra Young, am not involved in the declaration process and I am not the person who informed the state of the decision. That communication comes from FEMA officials in Washington.
I am sending along some links where you can find additional information on the disaster declaration process and FEMA Individual Assistance and Public Assistance programs.
Declaration process: https://www.fema.gov/declaration-process
Individual assistance program: http://www.fema.gov/recovery-directorate/assistance-individuals-and-households
Public Assistance program: https://www.fema.gov/public-assistance-local-state-tribal-and-non-profit
People with unmet needs seeking information about disaster-related services should call 211, a statewide information and referral service. Anyone using a relay service should call 877-541-7905.
I hope this information is helpful.
Dear Ms. XXXXXX--
Thank you very much for your reply. We welcome all viewpoints here.......even dissenting viewpoints from government officialdom.
I understand your position on this matter and I am sorry you "drew the short straw." It is with absolute respect that I am responding to your email. However, I found your name in FEMA's own website. You were listed as a "Contact." Was this in error? Should I ignore information on FEMA's website. At your request, I will remove your name and email address from the body of the blog post. I suppose we will have to dig out someone else's name from the information you sent me. Should we pass your name on to them?
Also, you seemed to take substantial efforts in preparing your response. Again, with all due respect, it sounded like government gobblygook to me. It sure sounded pretty, but reading it was like trying to track a coyote down the creek. My question was a fairly simple two part question. Is FEMA established to assist citizens that have been damaged with no other recourse, and why some people, thru no fault of their own, are aided and not others with the same circumstances.
The answer I received seemed to be a college course model. It will take a whole semester to research the answers.
Ms. Young, I do not find fault with your answer. It is gracious that you answered, but your answer is as I would have expected. It is for others to decide who might be more concerned about victims, particularly senior victims that most often have less capability in adapting in catastrophic losses.
I shall remove your name as you requested, however I would like to point out that the email on this matter is now flying between citizens and elected officials.
Have a nice day. Would you like for me to send you some photos of my neighbor's houses lying in a heap? It's a big heap.