SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -- Commonwealth and federal disaster recovery officials announced today that more than $ 8.4 million in Public Assistance (PA) grant funds have been obligated to the Government of Puerto Rico to rebuild damaged or destroyed infrastructure in the aftermath of Tropical Storm Otto. From October 4 through 8, 2010 rains, flooding, mudslides, and landslides affected the island which resulted in a federal disaster declaration on October 26, 2010.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) PA program has provided funds to reimburse local, state and non-profit organizations for eligible disaster-related emergency protective measures and debris removal activities and for permanent restoration work. The FEMA PA program manages and funds up to 75 percent of the projects; the remaining 25 percent is funded by the Commonwealth and administered by the Governor’s Authorized Representative (GAR), which is the Office of Budget and Management.
“As of today, the obligated FEMA Public Assistance funds cover more than 331 projects in the 25 municipalities and state agencies designated to receive disaster assistance to repair and replace damaged or affected infrastructure,” explained Justo Hernandez, FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer. “When each one of these projects is completed, it will improve the quality of life in these communities while making them safer and stronger for the next severe weather event.”
Among the public works projects to be developed in some of the designated municipalities are, as follows:
- Villalba - main access road affected by a landslide -federal share: $412,919
- Yauco - main road affected by a landslide -federal share: $452,462
- Utuado – repair of eroded road embankment, collapsed reinforced concrete pipe, damaged road and collapsed gabion retaining wall- federal share: over $230,000
- Jayuya - repair 3,150 lineal feet of asphalt of washed-out road and integrate protective measures - federal share: $225,387
Likewise, state agencies, have also received PA grants. Such is the case of the Puerto Rico Department of Transportation and Public Works’ proposal to repair a failed road embankment and the reconstruction of a collapsed concrete swale. FEMA has approved $161,418 for this project.
While governments prepare and recover for disasters, FEMA encourages individuals, families and businesses to be proactive and get ready for any hazards in their communities. Emergency preparedness information is available at www.ready.gov or through the office of e...