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Hannibal Courier - Post - Hannibal, MO
  • One year later: Financial repercussions still being felt

  • All the electrical service has been restored and most of the storm damage has been picked up. However, repercussions from the May 20, 2013, severe-weather event are still being felt one year later.
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  • All the electrical service has been restored and most of the storm damage has been picked up. However, repercussions from the May 20, 2013, severe-weather event are still being felt one year later.
    “It’s hard to define ‘recovery,’” said City Manager Jeff LaGarce. “To date, we've recovered some $1,200 from the federal government. We still await $90,000 from them, though we spent over three times that amount we probably won't recover.  
    “The Board (of Public Works) more than spent twice as much as the city, and hasn't recovered a dime. It’s not the type of thing any community wishes to encounter.”
    Bob Stevenson, general manager of the BPW, reports its storm damage costs amounted to around $750,000, none of which was reimbursable by the Federal Emergency Management Agency or any other agency.
    “A month later the governor declared an emergency for other storm damage in Northeast Missouri, but his declared emergency time frame did not include our event,” he said.
    The Hannibal Parks & Recreation Department’s out-of-pocket expenses after the storm were not overwhelming, according to Andy Dorian, department director.
    “We really didn’t have any overtime. Most of our cleanup was done on the clock,” he said. “Really our only cost was the cost of the company (Timberline) that came in to remove trees and we used them in a couple of parks. If we didn’t have that company that came in to help us remove the tree debris once we got it to the street, we still might be removing trees. The amount of work they were able to help us with was unbelievable. The same with the Street Department picking up trees.”
    The cost of last year’s storm might have an extended impact, according to Police Chief Lyndell Davis.
    “The most lasting negative effect on the city is the cost of the cleanup which still weighs heavily on city finances,” he said. “The impact is so burdensome that additional staffing cuts with both the police and fire departments are still being considered by city hall officials at a time when a reduction in staffing has already been experienced over the last five years due to the recession.”
     

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