$2 Million Distributed So Far By Irene Emergency Fund
10/16/12 7:34AM By Steve Zind  Download MP3
Vermont's Long Term Disaster Relief Fund has passed the $2,000,000 mark in the amount of money distributed to victims of Tropical Storm Irene.
Fund organizers say they're still short of the money required to meet the ongoing demand for assistance.
To date the fund has helped 195 applicants, but Doug Bishop who heads the Long Term Disaster Recovery Group's Allocation Committee says they're not even halfway along to meeting the need.
"It's our understanding that there are still several hundred cases that are still in the process, being worked on by case workers throughout the state," Bishop explains.
He says in addition to applications they've been processing, case workers in the field are hearing from people who are just now coming forward to apply for assistance. With $2,000,000 remaining in the fund, Bishop says organizers are concerned about covering the remaining need.
"We don't see that the funds we've raised are going to be enough," he says.
Bishop says the Vermont Long Term Recovery Group is still actively fundraising.
It could take two years for the funds to be distributed. In typical week, the group might approve 10 applications and the checks usually go out within a week. Bishop says there's no backlog, but as a fund of last resort the long term relief money isn't distributed until people have exhausted all other sources of assistance.