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United Way partners with TCOG to launch Emergency Relief Program

News Release
For Immediate Release

United Way partners with TCOG to launch Emergency Relief Program

Supplemental funds available for households impacted by winter storm

SHERMAN, JUNE 21 – Officials with Texoma Council of Governments, United Way of Grayson County, and Habitat for Humanity of Grayson County, have launched a coordinated Winter Disaster Emergency Relief Program as announced in a joint release issued by the local agencies today.

After February’s severe winter storms, many area residents were left out in the cold as a direct result of the unexpected hardships from dealing with damages to their homes. On February 19, 2021, President Biden declared a major disaster in the State of Texas, clearing the way for emergency protective measures, including disaster assistance such as grants and low-interest loans for temporary housing and home repairs with FEMA. The application deadline for that assistance, however, has lapsed; ending on May 20, 2021.

“Based on the calls we continue to receive through our information & referral programs, it is evident many families and households are still reeling from the economic impact of the sudden and unexpected damages to their homes,” stated Sean Norton, TCOG’s Public Information & Media Manager. “Many of these callers were either completely unaware of FEMA’s assistance or had been denied after applying.”

Norton added, “After connecting with our community partners at United Way of Grayson County, we devised a plan to support those who were unable to meet the FEMA application deadline.”

To be eligible for assistance through TCOG, applicants must reside in Fannin or Grayson counties and demonstrate their household was affected by factors related to February’s severe winter storms. The funds available through Habitat for Humanity, however, are limited to Grayson County residents only.

Additionally, to be eligible for assistance through TCOG, applicants must be at or below 80% of the area median income (AMI) as listed in the guidelines below. Habitat for Humanity’s income guidelines are slightly lower as assistance is limited to applicants who are at or below 60% AMI.

Household Size Fannin County (80% AMI – TCOG) Grayson County (80% AMI – TCOG) Grayson County (60% AMI – Habitat for Humanity)
1 $34,400 $27,800 $20,850
2 $38,200 $43,200 $32,400
3 $42,950 $48,600 $36,450
4 $47,700 $54,000 $40,500
5 $51,550 $58,350 $43,763
6 $55,350 $62,650 $46,988
7 $59,150 $67,000 $50,250
8 $63,000 $71,300 $53,475

“Habitat for Humanity’s Brush of Kindness program offers a lifeline to households whose homes were affected. Four months after the severe weather, we are still receiving calls from people who did not realize how badly their homes were damaged,” stated Laurie Mealy, executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Grayson County. “Home repair now will prevent substantial problems later and can mean the difference in begin able to stay in one’s home or losing it altogether.”Assistance through this Emergency Relief Program can cover expenses such as reimbursement of extended hotel stays for displaced families, rent & utilities, and even major/minor home repairs.

Assistance will be available until funds have been completely exhausted. To apply, residents will need to call the (903) 893-2161 ext. 3596.

Funds were distributed from United Way through the Texoma Regional Foundation for allocation to the Aging and Disability Resource Center of Texoma.

The Texoma Council of Governments is a voluntary association of the local governments in Cooke, Fannin, and Grayson counties. Established in 1968, Texoma Council of Governments promotes economy and efficiency in the coordinated planning and development of the tri-county region through its community and economic development activities. Both directly and through contractors, the Council provides housing, utility assistance, and weatherization services for low-income citizens in the region and assists the elderly through a variety of Area Agency on Aging programs. The Council also facilitates the delivery of grant funding for homeland security and criminal justice.