(AUSTIN) — Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar announced today that the Comptroller’s office and the Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) processed and distributed the first wave of federal aid, providing financial assistance to about 80,000 individuals and households displaced from their homes by Hurricane Harvey.
This week, the first round of qualifying families in the disaster area are receiving a one-time payment of $500 for critical needs assistance (CNA), a program authorized by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). In all, the Comptroller’s office distributed about $40 million in federal and state funds. The agency and HHSC will continue to process and distribute payments as quickly as possible.
Immediate or critical needs are life-saving and life-sustaining items including water, food, first aid, prescriptions, infant formula, diapers, consumable medical supplies, durable medical equipment, personal hygiene items and fuel for transportation.
“While $500 is only a start for a family facing the prospect of rebuilding, this money will allow Texans devastated by Harvey to make life-sustaining and, in some cases, even life-saving purchases to meet immediate and critical needs,” Hegar said. “Texans and people from all over this country are coming together to ensure the communities affected by the storm recover and emerge stronger from this ordeal. I’m pleased our team was able to process these payments so quickly and get this money in the hands of the families and individual Texans who need it most.”
Families and individuals can apply for CNA by going to DisasterAssistance.gov. FEMA approves the applications, while HHSC and the Comptroller’s office process and distribute the payments to families and individuals.
According to FEMA, individuals and households may be eligible for CNA if all of the following conditions have been met:
- a registration is completed with FEMA;
- the applicant’s identity is verified;
- at registration, the applicant asserts he or she has critical needs and requests financial assistance for those needs and expenses;
- his or her pre-disaster primary residence is located in a county that is designated for CNA; and
- the applicant has been displaced from his or her primary residence as a result of the disaster.