Public Assistance Rebuilds Communities After a Disaster

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Release date: 
October 24, 2011
Release Number: 

ALBANY, N.Y. -- Homes and businesses were not the only casualties of Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee.

Municipal entities face a massive -- and expensive -- workload. They were the first to respond to the rising waters and must now address the damage and tons of debris the flooding created.

Public Assistance is a form of disaster aid that addresses the needs of municipal governments. Administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Public Assistance benefits everyone -- neighborhoods, cities, counties, states and certain private nonprofit agencies.

“FEMA Public Assistance dollars come to the community through a cost-sharing partnership between the state, local authorities and the federal government,” said Federal Coordinating Officer Philip E. Parr.

Public Assistance dollars clean up the community, repair bridges, put water systems and utilities back in order, rebuild libraries and replace damaged books, repair hospitals and emergency services, rebuild schools and universities and restore damaged public parks for families to enjoy again.

Public Assistance is available to:

  • State government agencies.
  • Local and county governments.
  • Private nonprofit organizations that own or operate facilities that provide essential government-type services.

Public Assistance grants are available to cover costs in seven work categories:

  • Debris removal.
  • Emergency protective measures.
  • Road systems and bridges.
  • Water control facilities.
  • Public buildings, contents and equipment.
  • Utilities.
  • Parks and recreational facilities.

The following New York counties were approved for Public Assistance as a result of Hurricane Irene: Albany, Bronx, Clinton, Columbia, Delaware, Dutchess, Essex, Franklin, Greene, Hamilton, Herkimer, Kings, Montgomery, Nassau, New York, Orange, Otsego, Putnam, Queens, Rensselaer, Richmond, Rockland, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Suffolk, Sullivan, Ulster, Warren, Washington and Westchester.

The following counties were approved for Public Assistance as a result of Tropical Storm Lee: Broome, Chemung, Chenango, Delaware, Orange, Otsego, Schoharie, Tioga, Tompkins and Ulster.

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.

Last Updated: 
July 16, 2012 - 18:46
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