FEMA to assess county spring damage

The Ray County Commission will have one more short waiting game on its hands before wrapping up repairs to spring storm damages.
The Commissioners joined representatives of 21 Missouri entities Wednesday morning at a briefing by FEMA liaisons, organized by SEMA. The briefing, held at the Ray County Library, explained to local representatives how to properly register to partake in federal disaster relief aid for damages from this year’s spring storms.
President Barack Obama approved Gov. Jay Nixon’s request for disaster area declarations for Ray County and 45 others in mid-June. The qualifying counties can now receive up to 75 percent reimbursement on qualifying disaster repair and relief expenses.
“It’s basically how to get the money flowing back toward your entity,” Presiding Commissioner Jeff Adams said. “You have to be at their kick-off to get the paper trail started.”
Adams anticipates a date and time will be set within the next two weeks when FEMA officials will tour Missouri to more closely survey and assess the level of damage. Adams said FEMA may choose to bring in their representatives from other states outside the region, if officials feel the situation necessitates it.
The next step will also include obtaining much more specific assessments of damages and estimates of the cost to repair, Adams said. If FEMA officials’ assessments suggest certain damages could occur again if repairs restore the damaged area only to the previous condition, they have the discretion to authorize additional work to discourage future issues.
It’s a matter of “fine-tuning,” Adams said.
“If it’s a recurring problem, over and over and over, they want to fix it once and get it over with,” Adams said.

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