Philadelphia County Added to Hurricane Sandy Disaster Declaration for Pennsylvania

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Release date: 
February 14, 2013
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HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Philadelphia County has been added to the Public Assistance declaration for Hurricane Sandy recovery in Pennsylvania, according to officials from the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

This announcement makes categories A-G of the federal Public Assistance program available to eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations in Philadelphia County.

Through the Public Assistance program, FEMA provides supplemental federal disaster grant assistance for debris removal, emergency protective measures, and the repair, replacement, or restoration of disaster-damaged, publicly owned facilities and the facilities of certain private nonprofit organizations. The Public Assistance program also encourages protection of these damaged facilities from future events by providing assistance for hazard mitigation measures during the recovery process.

Applicants for Public Assistance typically include organizations that provide public service, such as municipalities, townships and school districts. Other applicants might include volunteer fire fighter organizations; sewer authorities; emergency management offices; and regional police departments.

To be eligible for federal Public Assistance, applicants must show that their project is required as a direct result of Hurricane Sandy during the period from October 26 to November 8, 2012.

Public Assistance funding may cover costs incurred to return elements of the infrastructure to as close to their pre-disaster condition as possible.

Expenses may include costs for work such as debris removal and repair or replacement of damaged roads, bridges and other public components.

FEMA Public Assistance specialists work closely with individual applicants to review specifics of each project to determine which expenses may be covered.

FEMA manages the Public Assistance program, approves grants and provides technical assistance to the Commonwealth and applicants. The Commonwealth educates potential applicants, works with FEMA to manage the program and is responsible for implementing and monitoring the grants awarded under the program. Local officials are responsible for identifying damage, providing information necessary for FEMA to approve grants and managing each project funded under the program.

The addition of Philadelphia County brings the total number of counties in Pennsylvania eligible to apply for federal assistance for Hurricane Sandy recovery to 18. The 16 counties in the major disaster declaration signed by President Obama on January 10 include: Bedford, Bucks, Cameron, Dauphin, Forest, Franklin, Fulton, Huntingdon, Juniata, Monroe, Northampton, Pike, Potter, Somerset, Sullivan and Wyoming. Montgomery County was the 17th county added to the disaster declaration on January 17.  

All counties within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania are eligible to apply for assistance under the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program. Mitigation funding may cover costs of eligible projects to lessen the impact of disasters.

For a list of frequently asked questions about the federal Public Assistance process, see:

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. FEMA Region III’s jurisdiction includes Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia.  Stay informed of FEMA’s activities online: videos and podcasts are available at and Follow us on Twitter at



Last Updated: 
March 6, 2013 - 12:09
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