FEMA closing Gwinnett center

LILBURN - Victims of last month's severe floods have until Friday to apply for aid at a Gwinnett Federal Emergency Management Agency center.

FEMA officials announced the center at the Mountain Park Depot, located at 5050 Five Forks Trickum Road in Lilburn, along with centers in Cobb and Douglas, will close at 7 p.m. Friday.

Those three are the only centers remaining after the Sept. 21 floods.

"We are pleased with the pace of the recovery, but there are people who had damage from the flooding who have not registered for assistance with FEMA and time is running out for them," said GEMA Director Charley English, who is the State Coordinating Officer. "Registration with FEMA is an essential part of recovering from the flooding."

The U.S. Small Business Administration will continue operations at those locations, beginning Monday. The SBA Disaster Loan Outreach Centers will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays until further notice, a press release said.

Other locations in the metro area will also be used for SBA centers.

Anyone not able to go to the centers should call the SBA Customer Service Center between 8 a.m. and 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday at 800-659-2955 for information and assistance, or visit the SBA Web site at www.sba.gov/services/disasterassistance or send an e-mail to disastercustomerservice@sba.gov.

Applicants can apply for disaster loans from SBA's secure Web site at http://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/.

The low-interest disaster loan program is available for homeowners, renters and businesses of all sizes, the release said, and are to be used to repair or replace real estate and/or personal property damaged by the storms.

In addition to visiting the location this week, people can register for FEMA assistance at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 800-621-FEMA or TTY 800-462-7585.

"Even though the Disaster Recovery Centers are transitioning to SBA Disaster Loan Outreach Centers, FEMA is still helping households in Cobb, Douglas and Gwinnett counties," FEMA's Federal Coordinating Officer Gracia Szczech said.