COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Public Assistance funds are flowing to areas in Missouri affected by the pre-Christmas severe winter storms. More than $1.4 million has been obligated to fund response and recovery projects in nine counties and the city of St. Louis . The declaration covers storm damages incurred between November 30 and December 2, 2006.
Under the Public Assistance program, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) grants funds to state, local governments and certain private non-profits for emergency protective services and eligible debris-removal costs related to the disaster. Eligible entities may also apply for funds to repair or replace damaged roads and bridges, public buildings and their contents, publicly owned utilities, and parks and recreation areas.
The State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) administers the Public Assistance programs for the state of Missouri . Local governments, state agencies and private non-profit organizations in declared jurisdictions use the federal and state grant funds to restore their communities and repair critical infrastructure. Eligible jurisdictions include Boone, Cole, Greene, Iron, Reynolds, St. Francois, Ste. Genevieve, St. Louis and Washington counties and the city of St. Louis .
FEMA pays 75 percent of eligible cost; the state and local sources provide the remaining 25 percent.
FEMA manages federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident, initiates mitigation activities and manages the National Flood Insurance Program. FEMA works closely with state and local emergency managers, law enforcement personnel, firefighters and other first responders. FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on March 1, 2003.