Professional Landcare Network Implements Emergency Disaster Support Program

Hurricane Katrina, the most deadly and financially devastating storm ever to hit the American shores, has had a serious impact on the landscape and lawn care industry. The Professional Landcare Network (PLANET) is working to help green industry professionals who were affected by this tragic event.

PLANET’s emergency disaster support program will be developing as the needs of the green industry companies in the crisis area become clearer. As these needs assessments are being completed, we have asked our members to consider the following:

  • Offering financial contributions to aid in the disaster recovery. Many available sources for charitable contributions specifically targeted for these efforts can be found on the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Web site at www.fema.gov or the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NVOAD) at www.nvoad.com.
  • Assisting green industry employees from the crisis area by providing temporary employment while they are unable to work. Many green industry companies may have a loss of revenue for weeks or months and be unable to pay their employees. If any company is able to provide an experienced employee with temporary employment (and possibly housing) during this time, please go to PLANET’s Web site (www.landcarenetwork.org) and list available job postings (at no charge) under the heading “Disaster Support Jobs Available.
  • Providing member-to-member in-kind donations. While our green industry company members are rebuilding, labor or equipment that any company can loan to those in crisis area would be greatly appreciated. Look for this on the Web at www.landcarenetwork.org under the heading “Disaster Support – Help Needed/Help Offered.”

For those green industry companies in the declared disaster area needing immediate financial assistance, information is available for these needs on the FEMA Web site (www.fema.gov) or by calling (940) 898-5399 (FEMA Area VI). Additional information may be found at the Red Cross (www.redcross.org).

Homeowners and renters in the affected area must register with FEMA and obtain a Registration ID number by calling (800) 621-3362 to see if they are eligible for disaster assistance. Businesses may apply directly to the Small Business Administration for possible disaster assistance at (800) 366-6303 (for SBA Area 3).

To directly assist our members in their time of need, PLANET will be offering complementary membership renewals for companies in the crisis area for the 2005-2006 time period. Please contact the PLANET offices at (800) 395-2522 for more information about membership renewal. If you have any questions about this information or can help in another way, please call Tom Delaney at the PLANET office at (866) 831-1109.

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