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A new budget’s been approved by the Lake County Board of Supervisors. Lake Co News reports it was a brief meeting yesterday on the topic after long budget hearings this summer where fine details of the budget were discussed. The final budget is at nearly $243 million dollars, that’s 12 million more than the last fiscal year. The County Administrative Officer Carol Huchingson was not there but a video message was presented at the meeting by her explaining the county’s financially challenged due to a slow recovery and unprecedented wildfires, with three new ones since the board considered the budget in June. The budget includes technological systems, increased pension contributions next year and grant opportunities. She also stated in her video address it may be the last county budget where operations and services can be considered business as usual, pointing to the need of closing some offices on Fridays and a staff vacancy rate of at least 20 percent.

A moratorium in place for smoke shops and vapor lounges could be extended in Clearlake. The City Council will consider extending the moratorium in a public meeting tomorrow night after a closed session on possible litigation with the Clearlake Municipal Employees Association. The council to consider the extension on tobacco retailers, smoke shops, or hookah or vapor lounges after they got a request for a business license from a new smoke shop on Lakeshore Drive. City staff looking for more time to consider possible regulations.

Lake County residents impacted by the Mendocino Complex fire have until next Wednesday to apply for disaster assistance with FEMA. The deadline, next Wednesday, Oct. 3rd. After the presidential disaster declaration, federal assistance was available for homeowners, people renting and business owners who lost their home or business or had damage. You can apply online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or call FEMA’s disaster assistance line at 800-621-3362 or (TTY) 800-462-7585. Applicants who use 711 or Video Relay Service may call 800-621-3362. The toll-free numbers are open 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week. Loans, grants and more may be available.

Applicants will be asked for the following information:

– Social Security number;
– Address of the damaged primary residence;
– Description of the damage;
– Information about insurance coverage;
– A current contact telephone number;
– An address where they can receive mail;
– Bank account and routing numbers for direct deposit of funds.

Disaster assistance for homeowners and renters may include grants to help pay for:

– Rental assistance;
– Essential home repairs;
– Uninsured and underinsured personal property losses;
– Other serious disaster-related needs not covered by insurance.

FEMA, Cal OES and SBA have been providing essential emergency support to affected communities since the Emergency Declaration on July 28, 2018. For more information on California recovery, visit the disaster Web page at www.fema.gov/disaster/4382, Twitter at www.twitter.com/femaregion9, Cal OES www.twitter.com/Cal_OES and www.WildfireRecovery.org.

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