HANNIBAL — When the Hannibal Board of Public Works undertakes a permanent repair to the North Street storm-sewer system the cost of the multi-million-dollar project will not be paid for with any federal disaster agency money.

“At this point they (Federal Emergency Management Agency) are not going to pay anything on the permanent repair,” said Mathew Munzlinger, director of operations for the HBPW, during the March meeting of the HBPW Board.

While FEMA will not be sending a check to the HBPW to help cover the permanent repair cost, that doesn’t mean that monetary assistance from Washington, D.C., will not be coming eventually.

“We will look at using some of this government money that has just been approved and going after some of it to complete the repairs,” Munzlinger said.

FEMA’s denial of assistance came after “having weekly calls with FEMA about funding,” Munzlinger said.

Despite the fact that FEMA will not be contributing any money to the upcoming North Street storm-sewer repair, preparations for the project are ongoing.

“We are continuing with the design of the permanent repair,” Munzlinger said.

The HBPW was seeking funds from FEMA to help pay to replace the storm sewer’s existing stone archway with a box culvert from near the flood levee all the way to Mark Twain Avenue.

The estimated cost of the permanent repair is $5.5 million, which was the least expensive of the permanent repairs that was proposed in 2019 to the HBPW. That repair option was selected by the HBPW Board in October 2019.

A temporary repair, which consisted of fixing approximately 250 feet of stone archway, has already taken place on the North Street storm sewer. That work was necessary after runoff during a torrential rain event in May 2019 damaged the North Street storm sewer.

While FEMA has declined to pay anything toward the permanent repair, it has contributed some cash to pay for previous storm-sewer repairs on North Street. That work was performed by Heartland Restoration of Elsberry, which was awarded the project in March 2020 after submitting a low bid $51,655.

“They (FEMA) did (pay some) on the temporary repair that was made which returned it to its functional level of use prior to the disaster occurring,” Munzlinger said.

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