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County could get FEMA road aid after floooding

By Greg Bird

The recent rains and flooding event that caused havoc not only in McCreary County, but statewide as well, could qualify the county to receive Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) funding to help repair damaged roads.
McCreary County Emergency Management Director Stephen McKinney stated six county roads: Lum Strunk, Beach Grove, Clear Creek, Matthews, Round Top and Big Creek Boat Dock Road, all have suffered reported damage due to the 15 to 16 inches of rain that fell across the region from February 6th onward. The damages does not include state roads, such as a stretch of road in Yamacraw that is in danger of washing out.
While the degree of damage varied from road to road, the estimated amounts to repair the roadways would severely impact the county road budget, prompting the need for federal relief.
McKinney stated Judge Executive Jimmie “Bevo” Greene officially declared a “state of emergency” on February 27 – starting the process to apply for aid. Along with the statewide emergency declared by Governor Matt Bevin, FEMA officials are already in the state conducting assessments of damage to roadways and should be visiting McCreary soon.
McKinney said damage to county roads alone due to the flooding has surpassed $230,000, with a good possibility of increasing as more repair estimates come in. Statewide over $20 million in damage is being reported, well over the threshold to trigger emergency funding.
According to federal regulations the threshold for county relief is $69,000, which has been surpassed more than three times over. The statewide threshold is $6.5 million – again well below the total damage amount so far.
With the emergency declarations in place, and FEMA teams on the ground, all that is needed to get awarded the funding is getting approval from President Trump.

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