News

Flood-fighting costs exceed $100,000

flood costs
Expenses incurred by the city of Hannibal during its flood-fighting efforts this spring and early summer have exceeded $100,000, according to figures provided by city hall and the board of public works.
By Danny Henley, Courier-Post Reporter
Posted: Jul. 10, 2019 4:27 pm

Expenses incurred by the city of Hannibal during its flood-fighting efforts this spring and early summer have exceeded $100,000, according to figures provided by city hall and the board of public works.
Thus far the largest financial burden has been shouldered by the HBPW.
"We have spent about $100,000 in flood prevention efforts to date and that does not include anything related to the North Street (storm sewer) failure," said HBPW General Manager Heath Hall during the HBPW Board meeting last month. "I expect that number to double or triple."
Hannibal Finance Director Karen Burditt said city expenses to this point amount to $22,937, which has come from the city's Catastrophe Fund. The city is only able to count costs incurred after April 29, Burditt said.
While Hall said the majority of the HBPW's expenses are labor related, the city's total does not include any straight pay or overtime, according to Burditt.
Both the city and HBPW are hopeful federal assistance will eventually be approved.
"We continue to work with the emergency management coordinator and FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) hopefully on reimbursements for some of these expenses. Nothing is guaranteed," Hall said. "I think they are taking the necessary steps to try and get some (funding), but those decisions haven't been made yet. We are going to continue to track our expenses, including the North Street failure, as if it (reimbursement) is a possibility. If it is, great."
Hannibal Director of Central Services Andy Dorian was scheduled to meet with FEMA representatives late last month.
"We're documenting everything, these (damage) costs, the cleanup, all that stuff," Dorian said during the June 20 meeting of the Hannibal Park Board. "Hopefully, at some point there will be a (disaster) declaration and we can get reimbursement for some of this damage."
The state of Missouri took a necessary step toward attempting to secure damage reimbursement on June 24 when Lt. Governor Mike Kehoe requested that President Donald Trump issue a major disaster declaration for counties hit hard by flooding, tornadoes and severe storms beginning on April 29 and continuing throughout the spring. If awarded, it would be the state's second federal disaster declaration of 2019.
The state announced in late June that seven teams had begun conducting joint damage assessments for public assistance, which would allow local governments and qualifying nonprofit agencies to seek federal assistance for reimbursement of emergency response and recovery costs, including repair and replacement costs for damaged roads, bridges and other public infrastructure.
According to a media release issued by the state on June 24 a request for public assistance is expected to be made once joint preliminary damage assessments are completed in 64 counties. Among the counties where those assessments will be taking place are Marion, Ralls, Monroe, Lewis, Pike and Shelby.

danny.henley@courierpost.com

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