LIVINGSTON PARISH, LA (WAFB) - People who applied to get help from the Livingston Rises fund will be getting money soon, officials say.
Livingston Parish President Layton Ricks announced Wednesday the IRS has "given the go ahead" to distribute funds that are currently available.
"I would like to personally thank and recognize Waste Management for their generous contribution that made this assistance possible, as well as Sheriff Jason Ard, Livingston Parish School System Superintendent Rick Wentzel, and Rene Faucheux of Waste Management, Manager Municipal and Community Affairs."
One phone call is all it takes now that the Livingston Rises flood recovery grant has been given the green light.
"It is absolutely an exciting day here in Livingston Parish. You know we've waited since the flood and since this money was donated by Waste Management," said Ricks.
The $200,000 grant was announced late in 2016 with applicants able to sign up in January. Roughly three months later, Livingston Parish President Layton Ricks is excited to finally provide relief for some families still recovering from the August flood.
"Today, we started that process, so it's a very good day," Ricks added. "I've heard from two or three of the recipients and they are just elated, which obviously just warms your heart a little bit to know that you're finally able to do a little bit of something to help everybody."
Promised up to $2,000 each, recipients will be given a call, then asked to bring a photo ID to pick up their award.
"That way, we know we're handing it to you because some people are not actually in their homes yet. Some people are staying in rental properties right now and in apartments and things like that. We want to make sure we hand you that check," said Ricks.
Ricks says they are working around the clock to make those phone calls, but encourages people to be patient, asking them not to call his office. Instead, he says his office will call those successful applicants.
While the grant will certainly not make anyone whole again, Ricks says it is just a small gesture to help however they can. "Any little bit that we can do to help we knew would be a blessing and that's exactly what it is," he added.
If you didn't apply for funding, you cannot apply now. Those who did apply will get a phone call and will be told when and where the check will be made available. You will have to provide a picture ID to get the check.
Officials ask that you do not call or email the parish about the funds. They say this will only cause delays, which will take a few days. Additionally, not all applicants will be notified.
"Due to the large number of applications received, we were not able to fund all applicants in this first distribution cycle," states the press release. "Although no additional applications are being accepted at this time, unfunded applications will be kept on file and, as additional funds are received, will be considered again for future distribution."