ANNISTON - The arrival of hundreds of evacuees to Calhoun County is straining resources there and local organizations are expanding their services while waiting for additional federal assistance.
The Calhoun County Chamber of Commerce is working to set up a job bank with other agencies, while a call center established by the United Way of East Central Alabama directs evacuees to programs that help with everything from storing food and supplies to house-cleaning. Stan Walker chairman of the local American Red Cross chapter, estimates about 500 refugees have come to Calhoun and Etowah counties. He says another 200 are expected to relocate from the Birmingham Jefferson Convention Complex to a Baptist camp in Choccolocco.
Federal Emergency Management Agency officials are scrambling to get dorms at Fort McClellan ready for evacuees, some of whom might
have to move out of hotels before the week of the NASCAR races at Talladega.