9 Nov 2009

200 American Samoa projects expect to get US tsunami aid

1:48 pm on 9 November 2009

The US Federal Emergency Management Agency says it expects 200 projects will be submitted in American Samoa for federal funding following the September tsunami.

FEMA has provided 24 million US dollars in immediate assistance since the September 29th disaster.

This covers power restoration, debris removal, provision of temporary classrooms and medical assistance.

21 families have been provided funeral assistance .

Recognising cultural ceremonies involved with local funerals, Red Cross and FEMA increased the funeral assistance to families who have lost loved ones, from 2,200 US dollars to 5000.

The total spent so far on funeral assistance is just over 47,000 US dollars.

FEMA has disbursed 9 million dollars in individual assistance, 7.4 million for housing and 1.7 million for other needs assistance.

The Small Business Administration has approved 2.6 million in low interest loans to replace homes and businesses destroyed or damaged.,

The Governor's Authorised Representative, Evelyn Vaitautolu Langford, announced that unemployment assistance for those who lost their jobs as a result of the disaster will be available next week:

"This programme is offered by United States Department of Labour and it is funded by FEMA. It is a programme that has been approved for the amount of 925,000 dollars and it is anticipated this programme will be implemented within the next week and the benefits from this programme will last for 26 weeks."

American Samoa's Governor's Representative, Evelyn Vaitautolu