The six-month extension for temporary FEMA housing came yesterday, coupled with the announcement of a rent requirement in the new year.
Rental rates have been defined based on HUD fair market value for Ward County.
As Jennifer Thorgramson tells us, the announcement was accompanied by mixed feelings from those who are still recovering from the flood.
More than 1,200 Mouse River valley residents are still living in FEMA trailers like these.
FEMA residents have lived rent free for about a year, each with a unique set of recovery obstacles: some paying a mortgage on a not yet livable property, others fall in a flood plan foot print, and renters are wary to sign a lease at twice the pre-flood rate.
(Brian Hvinden, FEMA Spokesperson) "It's really, almost too early to be concerned about the rent situation. We're not going to be charging rent until January first and even when that applies, it won't be due until February first. So I think that's a really important thing for people to remember."
Rental rates for FEMA housing will begin in the new year.
Although official prices have not yet been decided, a two-bedroom FEMA trailer will be about $690 a month and a three-bedroom will be about $950.
(Bobby Rozzell, FEMA Resident) "I think it's a very fair deal. As far as the amount they're going to charge us."
(Joe Kraft, FEMA Resident) "Who can afford that rent? You need two people that have two jobs in order to have enough money to pay the rent."
(Jonathon Kennedy, FEMA Resident) "I think $700 is a little steep for these things because none of them are even sealed up right."
(Bobby Rozzell, FEMA Resident) "I think for some of the people it's still going to be real hard for them to do. Some people are rebuilding their houses and they're already forking out all the money that they have."
The prices are based on HUD fair market values for Ward County.
A new set of HUD requirements will be released in September, so the proposed rates may change before they're in effect.
When they're finalized, letters will be distributed to FEMA tenants.
(Brian Hvinden, FEMA Spokesperson) "Once they receive that letter they will have 60 days to file an appeal for a change in that rent. We'll be considering a variety of factors including the ability to pay."
At any rate, rental or otherwise, the FEMA deadline has been moved from December 24 to June 24.
In Minot, Jennifer Thorgramson, KX News.
Responsibilities for utilities will remain the same: utilities are included for those in the FEMA parks and those on private property will continue paying for utilities with the new rental rates.