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Truman residents eligible for aid

September 18, 2012
Kylie Saari - Staff Writer , Fairmont Sentinel

TRUMAN - Truman residents affected by the September 2010 floods may still have funds available to them to help with repair, according to Judd Schultz, housing service director with Minnesota Valley Action Council.

Schultz appeared before the City Council on Monday for a public hearing on Small Cities Development grant money meant to help residents fix up homes damaged in the flood.

No one from the public attended the hearing. The lack of attendance mirrors the lack of recipients for the grant.

"We aren't getting much use out of it," Schultz said.

The problem getting money into the hands of homeowners appears to be multifaceted.

To be eligible for one of the 20 $8,500 grants, a homeowner must have filled out a disaster loan application, filed a claim with his homeowner's insurance, and have an income below $48,250 for a family of four.

A surprising number of homes in Truman were actually completely uninsured during the flood, so no claims could be made. That doesn't exclude them from the assistance, however.

"If they didn't have insurance, they can't file a claim," Schultz said. "That is not a barrier."

Secondly, many applicants were outside income limitations in the first round of applications. But if a homeowner's income has changed, so might his ability to be approved.

Schultz said letters were sent to homeowners to make them aware of the available funds. About 20 applications were received. Many were denied, or failed to respond to a request for more information.

The grant is available until December 2013.



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