Certain areas that were affected by severe storm damage are now eligible for federal aid. President Trump declared a major disaster in the state and ordered federal assistance to supplement state and local recovery efforts in areas affected by severe storms, straight-line winds, tornadoes, and flooding from February 19 to March 20, 2019.
Federal funding will be made available for Cherokee, Colbert, DeKalb, Franklin, Jackson, Lamar, Madison, Marion, Morgan, and Winston Counties.
The Alabama Emergency Management Agency and FEMA worked with local EMA directors to calculate the damage across the state. Once a $7.2-million threshold was met for public assistance, Governor Ivey applied for disaster relief money through FEMA.
Governor Ivey released the following statement:
“The state of Alabama is far too familiar with the often unpredictable, damaging effects of severe weather. In recent months, our state has endured a variety of storm systems, including immense and historic flooding in North Alabama. Alabama is very grateful and pleased to welcome this news. President Trump always stands ready to help Alabama, and I’m grateful for his hand in this recovery process. We can now fully be on the road to recovery because of the assistance of President Trump.”
U.S. Senator Doug Jones (D-Ala.) also applauded the approval of the disaster declaration stating:
“I’m grateful to the President and FEMA for granting this major disaster declaration. This is a step in the right direction that will help communities in North Alabama recover after the devastating flooding that hit the region earlier this year. I will continue to look for every possible avenue on the federal level to help the folks who have been affected by this flooding.”
If the state requests additional help, further damage assessment will be made.
FEMA provided a summary of key federal disaster aid programs that can be made available as needed and warranted under the disaster declaration.
Assistance for State and Affected Local Governments Can Include as Required:
- Payment of not less than 75 percent of the eligible costs for emergency protective measures taken to save lives and protect property and public health. Emergency protective measures assistance is available to state and eligible local governments on a cost-sharing basis. (Source: FEMA funded, state administered)
- Payment of not less than 75 percent of the eligible costs for repairing or replacing damaged public facilities, such as roads, bridges, utilities, buildings, schools, recreational areas, and similar publicly owned property, as well as certain private non-profit organizations engaged in community service activities. (Source: FEMA funded, state administered)
- Payment of not more than 75 percent of the approved costs for hazard mitigation projects undertaken by state, tribal and local governments to prevent or reduce long-term risk to life and property from natural or technological disasters. (Source: FEMA funded, state administered)
How to Apply for Assistance
Application procedures for state and local governments will be explained at a series of briefings that will be announced by local recovery officials. Approved public repair projects will be paid through the state from funding provided by FEMA and other participating federal agencies.