Hurricane Harvey 2017
The HPCA office has been given the following names of organizations that are still ready to assist those in need of all kinds of Harvey help. These websites detail what the groups have to offer as well as what type of documentation is needed. While HPCA does not specifically offer endorsements for these groups, we do know that help is still out there. Please contact them directly should you need additional information:
Hope Disaster Recovery
BuildAid Houston
Harvey Home Connect
Memorial Assistance Ministries
Congressman Ted Poe's note about Bear Creek Village and Voluntary Buyouts: Click here to read an email sent on May 25th.

Harris County Flood Control District
Houston Transtar
POWER: CenterPoint Energy
TRASH: WCA Waste Services
DEBRIS REMOVAL: Harris County Pct. 4
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Replacing Lost or Damaged Documents
Courtesy of Senator John Cornyn's office

SNAP Card (food stamps): call the Lonestar helpdesk toll-free at 1-800-777-7328.
Green Cards: Call 800-375-5283 or click here.
Birth and Death Certificates: Call 888-963-7111 or visit this website.
Texas Driver's License: Call 512-424-2600 or click here.
Bank Checks, ATM/Debit Cards, or Safe Deposit Boxes: Call 877-275-3342 or click here.
Credit Cards: Contact your issuing institution: American Express (800-992-3404), Discover (800-347-2683), MasterCard (800-622-7747), or Visa (800-847-2911).
Credit Reports: Contact Equifax, Experian, or Transunion at 877-322-8228 or visit
Social Security Card: Call 800-772-1213 or click here.
Fraud Alerts or a Credit Freeze: Call 877-438-4338 or click here.
Medicare Cards: Call 800-772-1213 or click here.
Passport: Call 202-955-0430 or 877-487-2778 or click here.
U.S. Savings Bonds: Call 800-722-2678 or 800-553-2663 or click here.
Tax Returns: Call 800-829-1040 or click here.
Military Records: Call 866-272-6272 or click here.
Vehicle Titles: Call 888-368-3689 or click here.
Replace a Texas Marriage Record or Certificate: Visit this website for statewide information or visit this site for your issuing Clerk of Court.
Proof of Address/Residency: Click here.
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PERMITS: A Message from Harris County Engineering
"As you know, Hurricane Harvey left our area with an unprecedented number of homes flooded. We are working as hard as we can to issue permits as quickly as possible to families and businesses for repair. 
Per federal, state and local requirements, we are required to issue permits for repairs; we are not allowed to let folks repair without them. We have done damage assessments in your area and think we know which structures flooded (ie- need permits). If someone wants to ensure they are on the list, or if they see their neighbors got a permit but they did not, please have them call our Call Center at 713.274.3880 to report they flooded; it is possible we missed them and we’ll get that corrected in short order.
There is no need to contact us to start the permit process. We are working neighborhood by neighborhood to get the permits issued, and have staff that are working 7 days/week. We are working as fast as we can considering how large scale the flood damage is, and anticipate the engineers vetting your area beginning tomorrow. Yes - even the general permits need to be vetted per criteria FEMA has established. We’re working as fast as we can.
When permits are ready, we’re mailing them via the postal service to the residence. We also have staff that are emailing permits to residents around the County once their permits are issued if that is requested by the resident; the Call Center maintains a list of individuals who prefer email.
As I’m sure you’ve been told, DO NOT WAIT ON A PERMIT to remove flooded debris from homes!
Again, this is discussing repair permits. If an individual chooses to rebuild or modify their structure during the repair, please have them call the Call Center at 713.274.3880 to learn what is needed for the permit they will need for the specifics of what they are proposing."
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See below for:

    1.)  Download Your ReadyHarris App Today

    2.)  WCA Waste Services Notice: August 31, 2017

    3.)  HCUD6 Boil Water Notice: August 29, 2017

    4.)  Now What? Some helpful advice …

    5.)  No Flood Insurance? What Next?

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Download Your ReadyHarris App Today

The Harris County Office of Security & Emergency Management (HCOHSEM) urges everyone to download the free ReadyHarris app, from the App Store or Google Play. The ReadyHarris app delivers real-time weather alerts, hosts a step-by-step guide to building a personalized family disaster plan, offers survival tip sheets, maps evacuation routes, and locates local emergency services. The app is available in both English and Spanish. Sign up to receive weather and emergency alerts at and closely monitor the news media. Residents can also follow HCOHSEM on Facebook and Twitter.

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HPCA NOTE: The following information from our trash collection service was distributed to all customers on August 31st. With the current conditions in our neighborhood, we can not assure that the WCA trucks will be able to reach all homes that are not flooded. We will do our best to keep you up to date as we receive further details.
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WCA Waste Services Notice: September 7, 2017

WCA Residential Customers:
"Limited household waste" pick-up on Friday for customers that are serviced on Friday. 
Residents MUST follow the following steps to have trash picked-up:
1.  Only household waste will be picked up.  
·         Household waste MUST be in containers, bags or WCA provided carts.
2.  There is a limit of 4 bags only.  ONLY 4 BAGS will be picked up per house.
·         Or, (1) Customer owned container
·         Or, (1) WCA provided cart
3.  Trash must be placed at the street BUT not on the street.  
4.  Do not put out trash until Friday morning.  Trash must be out by 7:00 am.
5.  If you have yard waste currently bagged at the street, you don't need to move; however, it will not be picked up.  Please make sure it is NOT placed in the street.
This is a limited service only. Our goal is to pick up the waste safely and as much as possible. We will
resume normal operations as soon as possible. 
Please note:  Recycling will resume on September 11, 2017.

WCA Waste Services Municipal Department

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Harris County UD 6 Hurricane Harvey FAQ’s 
(Prepared by Severn Trent) Updated Information as of September 8, 2017 4:00 p.m. 

Is my water safe to drink? 
The HCUD6 water system suffered a catastrophic loss during Hurricane Harvey. The District issued a Boiled Water Notice and activated the Interconnect with Jackrabbit Road PUD. Currently the water being served to the residents of HCUD6 meets all state and federal requirements. Upon recommendation of the operator, we have elected to maintain the boiled water status as a precaution. Because Jackrabbit is serving as our water source, the West Harris County Regional Water Authority has identified Jackrabbit as a priority customer
and has agreed to put Jackrabbit’s water needs at the top of their service area.
What has happened to the HCUD6 wastewater collection system?
The wastewater system collects the sanitary sewage and pumps it to the Jackrabbit Regional facility via two separate lift pump stations. Lift station #1, located off Clay Road, has been temporarily repaired and is pumping sewage to the Jackrabbit facility. Lift Station #2 is still
underwater and non-operational at this time. As the water recedes at Lift Station #2, ST will begin repairs ASAP.
What has happened to the Jackrabbit Regional WWTP?
The Jackrabbit Regional WWTP is operating in a very limited capacity. The facility has sustained significant damage and is in the process of being evaluated for repair.
What actions can homeowners take? 
Residents of HCUD6 can provide the most beneficial action by limiting the amount of water used as much as possible. Refrain from bathing, washing clothes, and using your dishwasher. Showers, use of toilets, brushing teeth are acceptable. If you experience a sanitary sewer backup, contact ST at 281 398-8211 and they will come out and help you.

When will repairs be made? 
Until the water recedes at Lift Station #2, we are unable to evaluate the condition of the assets or make repair. As soon as possible, we will deploy mobile pumping equipment at lift station #2 to relieve the system. 

What precautions should I take with the flood water?
Whether the water is deep or shallow, floodwaters are dangerous. They can carry debris, pollution, sharp objects and nasty critters. Keep children out of floodwaters, wash hands thoroughly, and disinfect or throw out items that have come in contact with floodwaters. 
Whether your yard got a little wet, or your house has water inside, be SMART about cleaning up the mess: Wear gloves and dispose of items that cannot be thoroughly cleaned. 
There will be many stray animals and pets because of the flooding. NEVER approach unfamiliar animals.
The floodwaters brought more than just damage and debris. Mosquitos will start breeding in standing water.
Dump/clean out containers with water (birdbaths, buckets, toys, pet bowls) to prevent mosquitoes from breeding. 
Find more information at: 
How will the flood affect my billing?
Residents of HCUD6 may have received an E-Bill. At this time, payments on the bill are suspended. A bill will be generated next month combining 2 months’ usage and allowing residents one extra month to pay their usage. Penalties will not be assessed and residents who experienced leaks during the storm should contact our Customer Service department to assist with adjustments to their bill.
Whose fault is this? Didn't the MUDs prepare? 
MUDs are designed and required to build to certain criteria to protect customers from many events. Harvey brought in excess of 50 inches of rain to our area. In an area with the topography that Houston has, there is no amount of planning and preparation that can adequately deal with 50 inches of rain. HCUD6 has taken extreme measures to protect its facilities and its customers but this event was of such great magnitude there was no way to repair or mitigate what this storm brought. 

As the floodwaters recede and infrastructure facilities can be safely accessed, we intend to use all available resources to restore wastewater service to the entire HCUD6 community.  This will include installation of stand-by pumping units. 

Our primary concern is to protect the health and safety of the public and all actions taken will be with that goal in mind.
Boil Water Notice
Boil Water Notice for Community Public Water Systems
August 29, 2017 
Due to loss of pressure in the system, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has required the Harris County UD 6, TX1010501 public water system to notify all customers to boil their water prior to consumption (e.g., washing hands/face, brushing teeth, drinking, etc). Children, seniors, and persons with weakened immune systems are particularly vulnerable to harmful bacteria, and all customers should follow these directions). 
To ensure destruction of all harmful bacteria and other microbes, water for drinking, cooking, and ice making should be boiled and cooled prior to use for drinking water or human consumption purposes. The water should be brought to a vigorous rolling boil and then boiled for two minutes. 

In lieu of boiling, individuals may purchase bottled water or obtain water from some other suitable source for drinking water or human consumption purposes. 

When it is no longer necessary to boil the water, the public water system officials will notify customers that the water is safe for drinking water or human consumption purposes. 

Once the boil water notice is no longer in effect, the public water system will issue a notice to customers that rescinds the boil water notice in a manner similar to this notice. 

Please share this information with all the other people who drink this water, especially those who may not have received this notice directly (for example, people in apartments, nursing homes, schools, and businesses). You can do this by posting this notice in a public place or distributing copies by hand or mail. 

If you have questions concerning this matter, you may contact Mirna Bonilla-Odums at 281-460-0189.

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Listed below are some helpful articles for residents concerning the recent flood in Bear Creek Village. Please note that these articles are meant to assist your efforts to recover and rebuild, but are not meant to replace official local, state or federal procedures.

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Now What? Some helpful advice ...

FROM A HELFUL BEAR CREEK NEIGHBOR: For my friends that have water in your home and are wondering "now what" - this is a brain dump based on experiences in 2008, 2015 and 2016 - hope it helps:

1. Ensure physical safety - everything else can be replaced - you can’t.

2. You are in a marathon now, not a sprint - everything will take much, much longer than you want it to. You will be dealing with the federal government (National Flood Insurance Program) and they move at their own is a process!

3. Take pictures and video - lots of pictures and video. Talk through your videos with the brand and model of the items that you have damaged to help with the claims process. Establish how high the water was inside and outside of your house. You need to prove how deep the water was as part of your flood claim. Use a yardstick or ruler on the outside of your house to establish the high water mark.

4. File your claim immediately - get in line for adjustors, etc .

5. Flood insurance will not reimburse you for loss of use, so any hotel or lodging expenses will be out of pocket. There is not an option for "Loss of Use" on the Flood Policy like the Homeowner and Windstorm policies. (Check with FEMA for housing options.)

6. Save all receipts - all of them.

7. Order a POD or storage container as they will sell out fast.

8. As soon as the water recedes, start mitigating the damage. Shopvac out what water you can, remove the wet carpets, remove the baseboards and start removing wet sheetrock. Cut a line about 2 feet up the wall. The straighter you cut, the easier the rebuild will be. Bag debris/insulation etc and take it outside. Save a square of ruined carpet (2 feet by 2 feet) and ruined carpet pad for the insurance to verify replacement value - if you have multiple carpets, save multiple samples. - Your goal is to get anything wet out of your house so it can begin to dry. Don’t worry about removing glue down hardwoods, let the contractor handle that during the rebuild

9. Take pictures of any damage you see, wet sheetrock, wet carpet, wet furniture, anything you want to claim - document. For contents, document individual items - each shirt, book, etc. needs to be enumerated and documented for the claim - if you say 20 books on your claim, you need a photograph where 20 books can be individually accounted for - be exact and over detailed. They will want to know when you bought the item, where you bought the item, and what you paid for it. Flood insurance Contents Coverage is on an Actual Cash Basis. Therefore, they will take the original cost of the item less the depreciation and that is what you will be paid for the loss on said item.

10. We are expecting more rain so don’t put flood debris where it can float away, block a drain and cause more trouble.

11. Be very careful about hiring “the experts” companies will bring in fans, etc. and eat up a lot of your claim check by “drying” your house - once the walls are open, the studs will dry in time. Every dime you spend renting expensive blowers is money you can’t use towards granite countertops or tile upgrades when you rebuild. Fans, your air conditioner,  a dehumidifier from Home Depot will do the job. You can spray the studs with bleach as they dry out. We saved $10K each claim by doing the work ourselves in our three floods. If you can't do the work yourself and you do need to hire someone, make sure to confirm with your adjuster what they will cover when it comes to fans and dehumidifiers....there is a maximum number they will cover per room and per house. If they tell you that they need a generator to start work, confirm how much they will charge you to rent one and make sure to double check if it is covered by your policy and how much they will cover.

12. Be careful hiring contractors - ask for multiple references, ensure they use sub-contractors they know - they will be busy and be prepared to wait. In my opinion it is best to use a local contractor because weeks or months down the road if you have problems, they will still be here to fix it!

13. Plastic storage tubs work better than cardboard boxes for storage of your undamaged stuff.

14. Be nice to the adjustor - he or she will be valuing your loss and establishing the rebuild - every dollar counts, so be a pleasant memory for the adjustor, rather than “that” person. Understand that some of these adjusters have driven from 4 or 5 states away to come help with this claims process. Ask them as many questions as you can because they are the ones to help you understand what is covered and what is not. (An example would be your cabinets - if the lower cabinets go under water and the upper cabinets do not, they will pay for the lower but not the upper because they were not damaged. Your policy pays to only replace the items that were ruined.)

15. No matter who your insurance company is, all flood claims go through the National Flood Insurance Program, all money comes through FEMA, so the time between the adjustor visiting your house and you getting money takes weeks/months - be patient - it is challenging and horrible waiting, but you are dealing with the government and all the other claims that are in flight as well. Also, know that if you have a mortgage on your home, you will be paid with a two party check and you will have to sign it and send it to your mortgage company. Your mortgage company will send you portions of the dollar amount paid as you make repairs to the structure and you will have to prove that you are repairing the home.

16. Your first estimate will likely be less than you expect, but there has to be a starting point. Therefore, you want to work with your contractor to confirm the amount of coverage paid and if it is in line with what they charge. If the original estimate does not satisfy what your contractor charges, make sure your contractor gives you a detailed bid like the proof of loss that you receive from the flood adjuster so you can show in detail why additional claims dollars are needed. Be wary of working with 3rd party arbitrators as they will take a percentage of your total claim, not just any extra they get you in the supplement.

17. Accept help when offered and be specific - if someone asks “what can I do?” tell them something specific - I need candles, contractor bags, sandwiches - be grateful of those that reach out and be honest with what you need.

18. You will get through this, it is a struggle, but you will get through it. Understand that we have become an instant gratification society and things just can’t work that way in a catastrophic loss like this! Things will take time! Lean on your faith, your friends and family.

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No Flood Insurance? Some Resources:

1. Register with FEMA. Get in line now. Don't wait until the flood water recede.
2. File for the Disaster Assistance and Emergency Relief Program and file your Publication 547 form with the IRS. Both of these programs allow for residents to write off their losses via taxes, and even refile your most recent taxes, thus potentially getting an unexpected refund, something that could go a long way in recovery.
3. Apply for the Disaster Legal Services Program. Through this program, the government provides legal services to lower-income individuals. This can help when seeking insurance claims, dealing with contractors and home repairs, etc. A huge benefit.
4. Apply for Rebuild Houston Together, a group that helps senior citizens rebuild their homes.
5. See if you belong to a group that is a member of the Tool Bank, a group that brings much needed tools to a disaster area. Note you must be a part of one of their member orgs, such as a church or other charity, including neighborhood associations.
6. Apply for assistance with Team Rubicon, a group that specializes in helping gut homes damaged by disaster so that trade professionals can come in and get the job done faster and cheaper.
7. Work through the options at  Links found on this site will streamline some of the other steps, e.g. FEMA application.