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S. 1605: Housing Survivors of Major Disasters Act of 2019


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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on May 22, 2019.


Housing Survivors of Major Disasters Act of 2019

This bill makes certain individuals and households eligible for housing assistance in connection with a major disaster, including Hurricane Maria of 2017. To be eligible, an individual or household must be (1) occupying an otherwise unused or uninhabited property located in the area for which the major disaster was declared but does not have documented ownership rights to and is not renting the property, or (2) residing or have resided in an area for which the major disaster was declared but does not have documentary proof of residence.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) shall consider alternative forms of proof to determine the eligibility of an individual or household for assistance.

FEMA shall (1) create and distribute a form declarative statement that applicants for assistance may use to self-certify their eligibility for assistance, and (2) make the statement available in specified languages at all active Disaster Recovery Centers and on its website and social media.

FEMA shall enter into agreements with the Department of Housing and Urban Development to implement a disaster housing assistance program to provide temporary rental assistance to individuals and households displaced by any major disaster during 2017 and 2018, and shall engage in consultations regarding the implementation of such program for future disasters.