TEXAS CITY, Texas - Hurricane Ike's estimated 13.5-foot storm surge in Orange County, Texas, caused extensive damage throughout the county, including the Bridge City area. Now, a nearly $4.2 million grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will help the Bridge City Independent School District replace the severely damaged Hatton Elementary School.
Because costs to repair the school would have been more than 50 percent of the replacement value, the school qualified for replacement funding from FEMA. This FEMA grant will pay 90 percent of the uninsured portion of the building's replacement costs. FEMA recently awarded a $3.6 million grant toward replacement costs for the district's other elementary school, Sims Elementary.
"By contributing to the rebuilding efforts of these schools FEMA is ensuring that their students have a safe and secure environment in which to learn," said Federal Coordinating Office Brad Harris. "As the Bridge City ISD recovers from Hurricane Ike, so does the entire community."
Once FEMA reimburses the state of Texas it is the state's responsibility to manage the funds, which includes making disbursements to local jurisdictions and organizations that incurred costs. The obligated funds are a portion of nearly $1.3 billion in total Public Assistance disaster funds sent to the state since September 2008. In all, federal assistance to Texas for the Hurricane Ike recovery effort tops $2.4 billion.
"Despite immediate efforts to get Hatton Elementary cleaned up and dried out after the storm, the damage was just too severe," said State Coordinating Officer Ben Patterson. "We're pleased to see the district receive this FEMA assistance."
FEMA responds to all eligible requests for assistance through the Public Assistance program. For more Public Assistance information by county, go to www.fema.gov/ike and click on the Disaster Statistics button.
FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.