FEMA Funds

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FEMA meeting 

goes well, but 

some funding delayed

By Ted Pennekamp

 

There was a FEMA kickoff meeting held in the Emergency Management meeting room in the basement of the Crawford County Sheriff’s Department Building in Prairie du Chien on Oct. 25 to discuss FEMA funds that the county will be receiving from the Sept. 21-22, 2016 storm and flooding and the July 19-20, 2017 storm, high winds and flooding.

At the meeting, Robby Stoikes, the recovery section supervisor for Wisconsin Emergency Management (WEM), said that some municipalities in Crawford County will be seeing a longer wait for their 2016 storm reimbursement checks from FEMA. The reason behind this is because FEMA had an error in calculating data, which will be in favor of all delayed municipalities. 

WEM personnel reported at the kickoff meeting that FEMA had calculated a lower percentage of debris removal reimbursement than what most of the municipalities in the county were eligible for, said Crawford County Emergency Management Director Jim Hackett. This means that the checks will be delayed until FEMA can work out the mistake. However, it benefits all municipalities because they will get more money in return.

The damage to public infrastructure in Crawford County was approximately $3.5 million as a result of the Sept. 21-22, 2016 storm. 

“The kickoff meeting went well and has implemented a 100 percent digital process through FEMA,” said Hackett. “FEMA will be doing all of their grants and reimbursements through this new digital system. They understand there will be a learning curve and are willing to work with local officials until they are fully comfortable with it.” 

Hackett said that all previously reported damage will have to be uploaded digitally but FEMA has pre-approved all damage that was reported. Crawford County had $353,476 in damages to public infrastructure as a result of the July 19-20, 2017 storm. The funds are for public infrastructure only.

Hackett said that FEMA’s deadline for municipalities to submit paperwork is Nov. 6, 2017. They will then continue on the reimbursement digital process.

FEMA will pay for 75 percent of the cost of damage to public infrastructure. The county will pay for 12.5 percent and the townships, villages and cities combined will pay 12.5 percent.

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