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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Several ways to get help for flood damage

Monday, July 7, 2008

Ways to receive assistance for the costs of repairing flood damage covers a wide area.

Residents who live on property with a dam or levee have various ways of getting help.

"The majority of the levee and dam areas in Clay County are privately owned," Clay County Emergency Management Director Bryan Husband said. "They can also apply for assistance if either were damaged or if the water breached a levee and damaged fields and farming areas."

While funding can come from one of three sources -- FEMA Public Assistance Program, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers -- only FEMA is currently providing assistance.

"All of the assistance so far has been coming from FEMA, although the Soil and Water Conservation is helping out as well," Husband said.

In order to be eligible for assistance from the USDA NRCS, the dam or levee must be endangering multiple homes and/or businesses, and the County Commissioners must sponsor the individual who owns the area.

"The commissioners are the ones in charge of helping residents receive help for their dams and levees," Husband said. "They have a couple of projects in the works right now, and anyone with damage should definitely contact the commissioners as soon as possible."

The assistance an individual may receive, however, will not cover the entire cost to repair the damage.

"Typically, 75 percent of the project is covered by federal funding and the other 25 percent is a local match," Husband said. "It can be difficult for an individual to cover the 25 percent, but most of the levees in Clay County are also attached to a levee association that usually kicks in the match."

Dam and levee owners are not the only ones who can still apply for assistance.

Husband told The Brazil Times that the application period for any damage done by storms since May 30 is still open.

"There is no end date set," he said. "So any damage caused by the rain in the past couple weeks may also have the potential to be eligible for assistance. Residents should not hesitate to call and report their damage so they can try to receive help."

To report dam, levee or any other weather-related damage, and to apply for assistance, contact Husband at 446-2535, Ext. 156

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