Governor Quinn Announces Swift Federal Approval of Tornado Relief for 15 Counties

November 27, 2013

Residents Can Immediately Begin Registration for Grants and Low-Interest Loans; Businesses Can Apply for Low-Interest Loans
CHICAGO – Governor Pat Quinn today announced President Barack Obama has approved his request for federal assistance to help people and businesses in 15 Illinois counties recover from the Nov. 17 deadly tornadoes. The announcement comes just one day after Governor Quinn submitted his request for Champaign, Douglas, Fayette, Grundy, Jasper, LaSalle, Massac, Pope, Tazewell, Vermilion, Wabash, Washington, Wayne, Will and Woodford counties. Since Nov. 17, Illinois’ emergency management officials have worked around-the-clock to expedite the federal request and direct aid into the communities as quickly as possible.”

“Just days before Thanksgiving, this is good news for thousands of people in Illinois who have suffered so much,” Governor Quinn said. “I thank President Obama for his swift approval that will bring much-needed federal relief to those who desperately need it in the wake of these deadly storms. I encourage everyone who suffered damage or loss from the Nov. 17 tornadoes to register for grants and low-interest loans that will help them rebuild their lives.” 

On Monday, Governor Quinn submitted a request for federal aid to President Obama to help tornado survivors recover from the disaster. At least 24 tornadoes were reported on Nov. 17. The request detailed the severe impact the storms had on communities across the state, including damage to at least 2,441 homes, almost 1,000 of which that are uninhabitable.

“We will begin working immediately with the federal government to ensure tornado victims can get needed help as quickly as possible,” Jonathon Monken, director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency said.

Anyone impacted by the Nov. 17 tornadoes should register for the grants and low-interest loans they may be eligible for. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), which administers the assistance program, has a toll-free telephone number (1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for hearing and speech impaired) for victims to apply for assistance. Registration can also be done online at​.

Available assistance to people and businesses in the 15 approved counties affected by the Nov. 17 storms includes:

  • Grants of up to $32,400 to help with disaster-related needs and necessary expenses not covered by insurance and other aid programs, such as replacement of personal property, and transportation, medical, dental and funeral expenses.

  • Low-interest loans for up to $200,000 for homeowners to cover uninsured property losses, including repair or replacement of homes, vehicles, clothing or other damaged personal property. Renters and homeowners can receive loans of up to $40,000 to replace damaged or destroyed personal property, such as clothing, furniture, appliances, vehicles, etc.  

  • Crisis counseling, disaster-related unemployment assistance, legal aid and assistance with income tax, Social Security and veteran’s benefits.

  • Businesses and private not-for-profit organizations may borrow up to $2 million to repair or replace disaster damaged or destroyed real estate, machinery and equipment, inventory and other business assets. Loans are also available to some businesses for economic losses.
The Governor is committed to helping communities across Illinois recover following the deadly storms on Nov. 17. For more information about disaster recovery resources, including shelters and ways to help tornado survivors, visit​.