FRANKFORT, Ky. - More than $49 million worth of public works projects have now been approved in Kentucky to receive aid from the Federal Emergency Management Agency after last January's ice storm - and this is only the beginning.
The ice storm recovery, like other such cases, channels FEMA assistance to state and local governments and certain non-profits in the form of reimbursement for their work to combat the storm - work like salting icy roads, removing fallen tree limbs, paying emergency overtime to public employees and many other measures. More than 100 such storm-related projects have now been approved for FEMA aid, while a total of at least 1,700 are under consideration.
FEMA pays 75 percent of the costs of an approved disaster-related project, meaning that more than $36 million in federal funding is in the pipeline for the projects approved thus far, including efforts large and small.
For example, 7 separate projects conducted by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet will receive nearly $20 million in federal assistance, reflecting the challenge of clearing roads after the storm. Project size varies to include $32,010 for Marshall County's operation of its 911 emergency response complex during the storm, $23,307 to the City of Grayson in Hardin County for ice removal and traffic control and $13,897 to the City of Barlow in Ballard County for emergency generators in its city hall and sanitary lift stations during ice-caused power outages.
The complex mix makes predictions problematic, but some estimates have said that the eventual total of federal disaster assistance to Kentucky may pass $250 million. The 1,700 projects being analyzed represent requests from more than 650 state agencies, local governments and non-profit organizations.
FEMA leads and supports the nation in a risk-based, comprehensive emergency management system of preparedness, protection, response, recovery and mitigation, to reduce the loss of life and property and protect the nation from all hazards including natural disasters, acts of terrorism and other man-made disasters.