ORLANDO, Fla. – Officials with the Federal Emergency Management Agency announced Thursday that eligible Hurricane Irma survivors receiving Transitional Sheltering Assistance may receive an extension to stay temporarily in hotels while they look for an alternative place to live.
The Transitional Sheltering Assistance program, which pays for short-term hotel stays, has extended eligibility from Dec. 3 to Jan. 6, with hotel checkout on Jan. 7.
Participants in the program will receive a phone call telling them whether they are eligible for the extension and what they need to do to remain at their current hotel or to find a new hotel. Applicants must meet certain requirements to remain eligible.
Hurricane Irma survivors who are not currently in the program, but who may be eligible, are notified automatically. TSA participants must be registered with FEMA and be eligible for disaster assistance.
FEMA pays directly for the room and any applicable taxes. Applicants are responsible for all other incidental costs, such as meals, transportation, etc. Hotels may require a credit card for incidental expenses.
The program covers one hotel room for households of four or fewer members and a household of five or more is authorized additional rooms based on a limit of four people per room. One member of each household who is 18 or older must reside in each room.
FEMA said TSA-eligible applicants must find and book their own hotel rooms. The list of participating hotels is on DisasterAssistance.gov, under the Transitional Sheltering Assistance Program link or by phoning the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362. For TTY, or teletypewriter, call 800-462-7585. For 711 or Video Relay Service, call 800-621-3362.
Applicants with disabilities or those who have access and functional needs should check with hotels to ensure appropriate accommodations are available. Those with pets must check to see if pets are accepted. Applicants must show photo identification and adhere to any hotel check-in requirements.