Become a digitalPLUS subscriber. 99¢ for 4 weeks.

New Hours for Pennsylvania Disaster Recovery Centers

FEMAUnemployment BenefitsFamilyBusinessInsuranceLebanon

The hours of operation for all Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) serving survivors of Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania will change on Monday, November 7, disaster officials announced today.

The new DRC hours will be:• Monday through Friday – 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.• Saturday – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.• Sunday – Closed All DRCs will be open Veterans' Day, Friday, November 11.

"The deadline for registration for disaster aid is only days away," Commonwealth Coordinating Officer John Forr said. "I urge everyone who has suffered damage from the September storms and flooding to, first, register with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and then visit a DRC. You'll find a wealth of disaster-related information there."

Personnel from Commonwealth and Federal agencies at the DRCs and the information they can provide include:• FEMA – Answers to questions about the application process; information regarding grants for temporary housing, home repairs, personal property losses and other disaster-related needs such as medical, dental and funeral costs; and tips regarding rebuilding stronger and safer to prevent future storm damage.• U.S. Small Business Administration – low-interest disaster loans available to individuals, nonprofits and businesses of any size for the repair or replacement of real estate and/or personal property damaged by the storms and related flooding.• Commonwealth of Pennsylvania agencies– a broad range of services including replacement of vehicle titles and driver's licenses, tax assistance, and help with insurance claims and problems with insurance. Commonwealth agencies at DRCs are listed below.

"It's best to register before you visit a Disaster Recovery Center," said Federal Coordinating Officer Thomas J. McCool. "That way, any questions you have can be answered face to face. You can visit any DRC regardless of where you live or work."

Officials of both the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA) and FEMA urge those who sustained disaster-related losses to register by the deadline, even if they are unsure of their eligibility.

The deadline for registering for disaster assistance is November 14.

There are four ways to register with FEMA:1. Call 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). Operators assist callers seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Help is available in most languages. If you have a speech disability or hearing loss and use a TTY, call 1-800-462-75852. Register online at 3. Register using a tablet or smartphone by visiting 4. If you use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 1-800-621-3362. If you have a disability and need help registering, please contact FEMA at 1-800-621-3362 and ask for assistance.

Information to have ready when registering with FEMA includes the address of the damaged property, names of members of the household, a general description of the damage, the Social Security number of any family member living in the home, the extent of insurance coverage and certain other information needed to expedite the process.

Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 1-800-462-7585.

A list of the Disaster Recovery Centers that remain open throughout central and eastern Pennsylvania is presented below. To find other DRCs that may be close to you, go to

(Lists of Commonwealth Agencies and DRCs follow)

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Agencies at Pennsylvania Disaster Recovery Centers

• Pennsylvania Department of Aging – replacement of their prescription cards (PACE and PACENET)• Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture – provides assistance and information to farmers• Office of Attorney General – assists in protecting consumers concerning price gouging and disreputable business concerns and practices• Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development/Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency – assists with housing questions• Pennsylvania Department of Education – guidance to schools and families on disaster-related issues involving schools• Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection – issues special permits and well water test kits, as well as provides information on hazardous material household chemical debris• Pennsylvania Department of Health – assists with replacement of birth and death certificates and provides guidance on decontamination or disposal of contaminate food and drugs, purification of wells, and necessity for tetanus and hepatitis B vaccinations• Pennsylvania Department of Transportation – replacement of titles and driver's licenses and registrations• Pennsylvania Department of Revenue – provides tax assistance and tax forms• Pennsylvania Department of Insurance – assistance with insurance claims and settlements and obtaining copies of lost policies• Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare – mental health crisis counseling, questions on food stamps, and the Individual and Household Program• Office of General Counsel/Pennsylvania Bar Association – provides direction on finding legal assistance• Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry – Disaster Unemployment Assistance when available and career workforce assistance

Pennsylvania Disaster Recovery CentersOpen 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. Closed Sunday.

Bradford CountyTowanda Fire Company101 Elm StreetTowanda, PA 18848

Columbia CountyColumbia County Ag Center702 Sawmill RoadBloomsburg, PA 17815

Dauphin CountyOld Boscov's BuildingHarrisburg East Mall3501 Paxton StreetHarrisburg, PA 17111

Lancaster CountyM & T Bank Building2270 Erin CourtLancaster, PA 17601(Closing Nov. 11)

Lebanon CountyLebanon Valley Mall22nd & Cumberland StreetsLebanon, PA 17046

Luzerne CountyLuzerne County Community CollegePublic Safety Training Center1333 South Prospect StreetNanticoke, PA 18634

Lycoming CountyBuilding740 Fairfield RoadMontoursville, PA 17754

Northumberland CountyCareer Link Center2 East Arch StreetShamokin, PA 17872(Closing Nov. 11)

Philadelphia CountyBelfield Recreation Center2109 West Chew AvenuePhiladelphia, PA 19138

Wyoming CountyTunkhannock Area Administration Building Gymnasium41 Philadelphia AvenueTunkhannock, PA 18657

York CountyPleasant Acres Annex Building118 Pleasant Acres RoadYork, PA 17402

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun