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Security/Emergency Information

Deadline extension for FEMA nonprofit assistance

Many kinds of nonprofit organizations that were affected by #Sandy are eligible for “public assistance” from FEMA. The grants cover at least 75% of an organization’s uninsured and underinsured damages and certain labor and equipment costs directly related to storm response. If you have any specific questions feel free to contact David Pollock (212.983.4800×132) or Marcia Eisenberg (212.983.4800×137) both can be reached at

Thanks to Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, NY Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (NYDHSES) Commissioner Jerome M. Hauer and its Chief of Public Assistance Christopher Holmes; the deadline for nonprofits applying for FEMA assistance is now December 30, 2012 January 28 February 27th in NYC, Nassau and Suffolk (see later posts for other counties).

We hear the collective sigh of relief, but remember: each nonprofit applicant will have a FEMA/NYDHSES team assigned on a first come-first served basis. Organizations should submit the complete Request for Public Assistance package as outlined below (found here) ASAP. You are not considered an applicant until all documentation is submitted. If you delay submitting the package you will be further back in the queue. To help the team assigned to you, try to make your initial submission as complete as possible.

If you have any specific questions feel free to contact David Pollock (212.983.4800×132) or Marcia Eisenberg (212.983.4800×137) both can be reached at

Read on for specific guidance to complete the forms.

The initial forms are pretty simple:

  1. Request for Public Assistance. The top of the form simply asks for  contact information. At the bottom of the form, check off the box indicating that you are a “Private Non-Profit Organization”. Eligible nonprofits (click here for the formal definitions) are divided into two classes (see below). Schools should list themselves as educational institutions and other types of nonprofits should choose the categories that best describe their activities. Although synagogues vary, they also may be eligible to the extent that they serve as community centers, libraries, senior citizen day centers and/or day care centers (i.e., “essential, government-type services”).
      • Critical
        • fire/emergency/rescue
        • emergency medical care
        • utility/power/water/sewer/WWTP/communications
        • educational institutions
      • Non-Critical
        • senior citizen day centers
        • daycare centers
        • homeless shelters
        • shelter workshops
        • libraries
        • rehabilitation facilities
        • Community Centers
  2. Drug Free Workplace Form (only requires a signature by the authorized representative)
  3. Applicant Certification. Remember this is FEMA-4085-DR-NY. This form must be signed by the Chief Executive Officer of the applying nonprofit.
  4. OSC Substitute Form W-9. This is a form that asks you to fill in your EIN. We don’t know why they need a whole form for this. Your “Entity Type” is “Nonprofit Organization”.
  5. DUNS Number Form. If you’ve ever applied for a federal grant (e.g., Nonprofit Security Grant Program) you already have a DUNS Number. Just fill it in. If you don’t have one there are instructions about applying.
  6. State Tax Exempt Form / IRS Letter. Synagogues are not required to have an IRS Letter. We assume that they will accept your NY State Sales Tax Exemption Form, but we will check.
  7. PNP Questionnaire. Asks you to briefly describe the damage or the reimbursements for the documentable Sandy-related response or recovery work. This form asks you to submit proof of ownership of the building and a copy of your insurance certificate (FEMA only pays for underinsured and uninsured damages). If you don’t have the deed to your property it is available online (here in NYC, the Nassau County hotline info is here). Feel free to contact David Pollock (212.983.4800×132) or Marcia Eisenberg (212.983.4800×137) for help. Both can be reached at
  8. Organization Charter or By-laws
  9. Publications/brochures that describe your organization and or your website address and a description of membership policies or fee structures. There is a requirement that “All such facilities must be open to the general public.” Some bylaws may restrict membership, but almost every facility is open to all who walk in.

The forms and the supporting documents listed at the bottom of the form should be mailed or faxed to:

New York State Office of Emergency Management
1220 Washington Avenue
Building 22, Suite 101
Albany, NY 12226-2251
(Fax: 518-322-4984)

It is a good idea to submit the forms in a manner that offers proof of delivery. If you decide to fax the forms, indicate that you will mail a copy on the cover sheet and note in the mailed package that the forms were also sent by fax.

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