The workshop featured representatives from FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) and SBA (Small Business Administration) providing information about what services and financial support programs are available to help business owners recover if they were adversely affected by Hurricane Sandy. At the workshop were (from left) SBA Public Affairs Specialists Yvette Jeffery and Jessica Paul, FEMA Private Sector Specialist Gary Ayers, FEMA Assistant External Affairs Officer for the Private Sector for NJ Operations Susan Langhoff, Deputy Assistant External Affairs Officer for the Private Sector for NJ Operations Pamela Mason and FEMA Elite Program Manager for Local Business Transition Team John Ward.
I urge FEMA to modify the current emergency declaration so eligible expenditures by our first responders, state and local governments and non-profit agencies can be reimbursed," Tomblin noted in a statement also issued Monday. As the current Emergency Declaration stands, public and non-profit agencies that have made expenditures to distribute supplies and meet the needs of those in the affected areas are presently denied access to Category B Emergency Protective Measures funding.

A modification to the current declaration would allow eligible applicants in the affected counties to receive FEMA support, including reimbursement. Tomblin also requested assistance Monday from the Small Business Administration to expedite help for small businesses and eligible private, non-profit organizations. "Businesses suffered revenue losses as a result of the West Virginia American Water's DO NOT USE order in addition to local employees who lost wages," Gov. Tomblin also noted in his letter to the Small Business Administration that even after water was restored, certain businesses and restaurants were required to cleanse their facilities in order to meet requirements set by local health departments.

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