Deadline to apply for FEMA funds for September flooding extended due to weather

The deadline for residents to apply for financial assistance if their property was damaged because of the Sept. 17 and 18 flooding has been extended by three weeks, according to the Illinois Emergency Management Agency and Office of Homeland Security.

Frigid temperatures which hit Chicago in early January and were expected to linger this weekend caused the closure of several disaster recovery centers, which residents often rely on to obtain assistance from a Federal Emergency Management Agency representative. Between cold snap and recent holidays, FEMA officials decided to extend the deadline until Feb. 9 to give residents more time to seek compensation for damage caused by flooding in south Chicago and the south suburbs.

“State authorities acknowledge the challenges posed by the holidays and severe weather closures which may have prevented people from registering,” a statement from state officials said.

It has been a month and a half since FEMA came to the south suburbs following a disaster declaration approved by President Joe Biden which unlocked funds for those affected by the September’s severe flooding. FEMA has since provided more than 18,000 residents with $35.6 million, according state and federal representatives.

Of that money, residents of Chicago, Calumet City and Dolton have received the most support with more than $9.4 million going to the city and the south suburban towns receiving $7.2 million and $4 million, respectively, according to FEMA.

That sum comes to about $4,700 per household that applied, about $500 less than the average household allocation observed when FEMA provided support for those who experienced damage county and statewide from heavy rains in late June and early July.

For residents with damage to their homes or property from the September flooding, FEMA spokesman Larissa Hale advises residents to go online to find out how to begin the application process either online, in person at a nearby disaster recovery center or over the phone. More information is available at

“The message is getting out there but there are some that may not be getting it,” Hale said. “We work closely with the local municipalities. We work closely with the state. So it is all kind of like a team effort in getting the message out.”