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Online Waiting List Opens Tonight for Federal Storm-Shelter Subsidies

Earlier this month, the North Central Texas Council of Governments says it got swamped and surprised when it started accepting applications for a federal storm-shelter rebate program. So now it’s rolling out an online waiting list for more people hoping to snag up to $3,000 apiece to offset the cost of a safe room. The web site will take applications from residents of 16 local counties on a staggered scheduled. The process begins with Collin County tonight at 7 sharp and Dallas County tomorrow morning at 8, for example. There are a couple of caveats, though. It will take anywhere from three to 18 months for the agency to contact you once your name is on the list. And the program isn’t retroactive. Meaning you can’t sign a contract to build the shelter until you’ve been “pre-approved” for the dough.