Maui wildfire relief resources: Federal assistance surpasses $347M

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The Aug. 8 wildfire left concrete ruins and twisted metal debris off of the Front Street seawall. PC: Brian Perry

Since wildfires swept over the Island of Maui Aug. 8, more than $347.8 million in federal assistance has been approved for 7,090 households. This includes:

  • $48,731,885 in FEMA assistance approved for individuals and households, which represents:
    • $26,946,995 approved for housing assistance, including more than $20.9 million in rental assistance.
    • $21,784,889 approved for Other Needs Assistance
    • $299,116,900 in SBA disaster loans approved for affected Maui homeowners, renters, and businesses.

COFA citizens can apply for disaster assistance

Compacts of Free Association (COFA) citizens may now apply for FEMA disaster assistance for losses caused by the wildfires and high winds on Maui. Because of a recent change in the law, federal benefits are extended to COFA citizens designated as “qualified aliens” who legally reside in the United States.

Among those who are now eligible to apply are citizens of the Republic of Palau, the Federated States of Micronesia and the Republic of the Marshall Islands.

COFA citizens have until Friday, May 31, to apply. Eligible COFA citizens must show that their primary residence on Maui was affected by the wildfires.

To apply, COFA citizens may call 808-784-1952 or visit the Lahaina Disaster Recovery Center (see address below). Phone lines and recovery center hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. HST Monday to Friday; 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. HST Saturday; closed Sundays.

Business loans


The US Small Business Administration (SBA) will continue to accept late applications for physical damage loans through Tuesday, June 11. No explanation is needed for the late submission.

SBA is reaching out to businesses on Maui to remind them that Friday, May 10, is the deadline to submit economic injury disaster loan applications. This is the last day for small businesses, small agricultural cooperatives and most private nonprofit organizations to apply for an SBA economic injury disaster loan.

SBA representatives are available for face-to-face application assistance at the Lahaina Disaster Recovery Center, Business Recovery Centers in Kīhei and Honolulu and at the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement office in Kahului. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 or email [email protected] for information.

Survivors may apply online and download SBA loan application at

FEMA housing, apply for continued assistance

Under FEMA’s Direct Lease program, the agency can help survivors who need housing. FEMA pays the rent directly to property owners. To date, 730 households occupy Direct Lease Units.


Survivors are also taking advantage of a separate FEMA program, Rental Assistance, to locate their own temporary housing.

FEMA is preparing to build a temporary group housing site (Kilohana) that can accommodate 169 modular units.

The American Red Cross has helped to care for about 8,000 survivors, about two-thirds of the pre-disaster population of Lahaina. The organization has put dozens up in hotels and provides meals, health and mental care, funeral expenses, financial support to move into longer-term temporary housing and other services to survivors, including those who are not eligible for some FEMA programs.

Currently, 2,569 survivors are housed in 11 hotels and other sites.

Disaster survivors are encouraged to reach out to the Red Cross at or speak to a Red Cross representative at the Lahaina Disaster Recovery Center


Anyone who has received initial rental assistance from FEMA may be eligible for continued rental assistance. To request an Application for Continued Temporary Housing Assistance or get help completing the form, call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362.

Disaster Recovery Center

At the Lahaina Disaster Recovery Center, survivors can speak to FEMA and other specialists, get help applying for disaster assistance, connect with voluntary organizations and access other federal and state resources.

Location: Lahaina Civic Center Gymnasium at 1840 Honoapiʻilani Hwy., Lahaina, Hawaii 96761.

Hours*: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday to Friday; 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday

*Closed Sundays and closed permanently Saturday, April 27

For more updates on Maui’s recovery, visit


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