FEMA activates its Emergency Lodging Assistance Program
FEMA activates its Emergency Lodging Assistance Program: Call for hotel participation in affected areas
FEMA activated its "Emergency Lodging Assistance (ELA) Program" to provide temporary lodging assistance to disaster evacuees. FEMA also refers to this program as the "Transitional Shelter Assistance (TSA)" program when communicating with evacuees seeking aid.
Hotels are encouraged to participate in the lodging assistance program. Hotels can seek direct payment for the rooms from FEMA’s agent, Corporate Lodging Consultants (CLC). A listing of the current participating hotels is available online at http://www.FEMAEvacHotels.com.
Lodging rates for the ELA program are established and governed by FEMA and in most cases are based on the federal per diem rate, plus applicable hotel occupancy taxes. FEMA indicated it will pay hotel occupancy taxes for guests participating in the emergency lodging assistance program; state and local taxes continue to be exempted until Sept. 22nd for individuals paying their own lodging costs.
Additionally, CLC is requesting that hotels log in to the online account at ela.corplodging.com as frequently as possible to reflect accurate room availability and list rooms either available or unavailable.
How a hotel can participate:
If a hotel has not registered yet for this emergency lodging assistance program, the hotel should follow the below steps or view CLC's online guide here:
- Set up an account for the hotel property via Corporate Lodging Consultants (CLC), FEMA's pay agent, online at https://ela.corplodging.com/.
- Not every guest is eligible for assistance through the FEMA program. FEMA determines whether a guest is eligible for assistance. If a guest has questions about his or her eligibility or status of assistance, direct the guest to FEMA's helpline at 800-621-3362. Note: only hotel guests, and the not hotel itself, should call the FEMA helpline.
- CLC will pay hotels for the room-night costs and hotel taxes only. Non-room night charges for guests will not be covered through this program. Additionally, consider visiting this THLA webpage regarding pet charges during a disaster.
- Participating hotels are reminded to receive and copy a Government Issued Photo ID from the guest at the time of check-in and keep it on file for two (2) years.
- The hotel must also obtain a signed copy of the terms and conditions form from the guest upon arrival. This form can be found on the PROGRAM INFORMATION page of the CLC website, as well as the direct link here.
- Remember to check each eligible guest into CLC’s ELA (Emergency Lodging Assistance) system as soon as you issue them a room. Delay in checking the guest in through the ELA system could result in billing issues or delays.
- The ELA call center is available to assist hotels with any issues or questions you may have. CLC’s helpline for hotels: 866-545-9865. (8am - 9pm CT Mon-Fri). Note: This CLC helpline phone number is for hotel employees only. Do not direct hotel guests to call CLC.
- CLC also asks lodging partners to regularly update their availability by informing CLC through their web account if the hotel is or is not currently accepting additional CLC participating guests.
Individual evacuees displaced by the disaster should contact FEMA directly to register for housing assistance.
- Before seeking room payment assistance, evacuees must register with FEMA via www.disasterassistance.gov or by calling 800-621-3362, and complete a disaster assistance application form. Note: only evacuees, and the not hotel itself, should call the FEMA helpline.
- Evacuees must present a FEMA registration number to the hotel upon check-in. If an evacuee has a pending application with FEMA but has not yet received official approval, the evacuee will not (yet) have a FEMA registration number and hotels may choose to require alternate methods of payment.
- FEMA determines the hours, processing timelines of these applications, and the eligibility for assistance.