(MOBILE, Ala.) Two tornadoes in one week ravaged parts of Mobile County. Now, officials are seeking federal assistance.
"Just because of the magnitude of the storm, and the number of people impacted, it does need to be considered," said tornado victim, Michele Nolen-Schmidt. "Not everyone in this area has adequate insurance. And because of the hurricanes, all of us have had increased deductibles."
An assessment team with the Small Business Administration traveled across the state of Alabama Thursday looking at all the damage from the Christmas Day tornadoes. Their first stop was Midtown Mobile.
"It looks favorable that we'll get SBA assistance, which is small interest loans to do repairs on your structures," said Ronnie Adair, Mobile County EMA Director.
Adair says getting SBA assistance is the better route for Mobile County.
"Their criteria and protocols are a lot less than the FEMA federal declaration protocols. They were looking for minimum of 25 structures with either major damage or destroyed," said Adair.
In order for storm victims to apply for FEMA money, a federal disaster must be declared.
Adair says the uninsured damage here doesn't meet FEMA's threshold.
"The figure changes periodically but Mobile needs about $1.4 million to $1.6 million worth of damage based on the population. And it looks like now between Mobile and Prichard we've only got about $593,000 worth of public assistance worth of damage," said Adair.
County officials say at least 650 homes and businesses were affected in some way by the storm.
40 of those structures were destroyed.
150 sustained major damage.
Adair expects the SBA to make a decision by early next week.