FEMA Obligates $17.8 Million To Help Kentucky Electric Co-Ops With Ice Storm Costs

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Release date: 
July 22, 2009
Release Number: 
1818-034

FRANKFORT, Ky. -- The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has obligated more than $17.8 million to help reimburse six Kentucky co-ops and rural electric cooperative corporations (RECC) for emergency response and repair costs resulting from last winter's devastating ice storm. 

"This was the worst natural disaster in modern Kentucky history," said Kentucky Division of Emergency Management Director Brig. Gen. John W. Heltzel. "It caused widespread damage to electrical systems from the weight of ice on system components and from falling trees and tree limbs. It left hundreds of thousands without power for as long as three weeks and deposited tons of debris from falling trees and limbs. The costs to our utilities were enormous."

Among other items, the FEMA Public Assistance (PA) program grants will help the co-ops pay for 2,425 electric transmission poles, 1,447 cross arms, 1,004 transformers, and more than 400,000 linear feet of conductor. These co-ops serve more than 170,000 members in 36 counties.

"Kentucky non-profit utilities would have been hard pressed to fund the total costs for repairs after a storm of this magnitude," said Federal Coordinating Officer Kim Kadesch. Reimbursement from FEMA will help them reduce the costs and, therefore, the fees to their rate payers."

Here are details of the applicants and projects:

Hickman-Fulton Counties RECC, Hickman-A FEMA grant of $1,377,917 will cover 75 percent of the approved project cost of $1,837,223 to reimburse the utility for the costs of running an emergency operations center (EOC) in the immediate aftermath of the storm. Costs for the 29-day EOC include staffing, equipment, and food and lodging for out of town crews.

Inter County Energy Cooperative, Danville-A FEMA grant of $2,202,137 will cover 75 percent of the total approved project cost of $2,936,182 to reimburse the utility for electric distribution system repairs.

Meade County RECC, Brandenburg-A FEMA grant of $2,622,353 will cover 75 percent of the total approved project cost of $3,496,470 to reimburse payments for repairs to the electric distribution system as well as administrative costs for the repair project.

Salt River Electric Cooperative, Bardstown-A FEMA grant of $1,017,484 will reimburse the utility for 75 percent of the approved project cost of $1,356,645 to run an emergency operations center in the immediate aftermath of the storm. Costs for this operation include staffing, equipment, and food and lodging for out of town crews. A second grant of $1,546,268 will reimburse the utility for 75 percent of the total approved project cost of $2,061,690 to repair the electric distribution system as well as administrative costs for the repair project.

Warren RECC, Bowling Green-A FEMA grant of $6,530,244 will reimburse the utility for

75 percent of the total approved project cost of $8,706,992 to repair the electric distribution system as well as labor and administrative costs for the repair project.

West Kentucky RECC, Mayfield-A FEMA grant of $3,851,341 will reimburse the utility for

75 percent of the total approved project cost of $5,135,121 to help pay for the emergency operations center opened by the RECC in the immediate aftermath of the storm. Costs for the 26-day EOC include staffing, equipment, and food and lodging for out of town crews.

As authorized by law, FEMA approves PA grants and provides technical assistance to the states and applicants. States receive, disburse and monitor the grants. Applicants are responsible for managing the funded projects and providing documentation to the state.

At the time FEMA obligates funding for a project, it places the money into a restricted federal account. However, a state cannot access those funds until it is time to disburs...

Last Updated: 
July 16, 2012 - 18:46
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