Nichole Hannahs

Assessing Damage from June Storms

by Nichole Hannahs on August 1, 2012 at 6:26 am

An assessment is under way in Muskingum County to review storm damage from last month’s severe weather.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency is busy meeting with townships, villages and other officials in 38 counties to review the costs of cleaning up.

Officials must provide time sheets, fuel usage and any contracts to prove the amount spent. Once all the numbers are turned in a report will go to Governor John Kasich.

"The governor will look it over, all the figures and all the reports. If he thinks the state does not have the resources to take care of all this damage he’ll then make a formal request to the president to have counties declared disaster areas," said Public Information Officer for FEMA Sam Ventura.

Local EMA Director Bo Keck said the state must show at least $16m in damage to qualify for federal aide. There’s no timetable on if or when money will be received so bills must still be paid.

Keck explained, "The bills have to be paid upfront no matter what. The contractors need their money like everyone else. So, the townships and villages and the utility companies have to pay their stuff up front and then if we get the reimbursement it will be around 75 percent."

FEMA said they have four teams working throughout the state and want to take as much time with each county as needed to make sure they are getting all the damages. Keck is confident the state will meet the $16m mark due to preliminary estimates being around $26m.