President Obama declares disaster, allows funds for Pa. blizzard

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PENNDOT PLOW_273767

WASHINGTON – President Barack Obama signing a disaster declaration for Pennsylvania and making federal disaster aid available to 23 counties after the January 22-23 blizzard.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency said, ” federal funding [is] available to commonwealth and local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work and the repair or replacement of facilities damaged by the severe winter storm and snowstorm in Adams, Bedford, Berks, Blair, Bucks, Chester, Cumberland, Dauphin, Fayette, Franklin, Fulton, Juniata, Lancaster, Lebanon, Lehigh, Montgomery, Northampton, Perry, Philadelphia, Schuylkill, Somerset, Westmoreland, and York counties.”

The state and local governments in those counties are also eligible for funding on a cost-sharing basis for snow assistance for a continuous 48 hour period during or proximate to the incident period.

FEMA said federal funding is also available on a cost-sharing basis for hazard mitigation measures for all counties in the state.

Below is a summary of the aid programs available to the affected counties.Assistance for the Commonwealth and Affected Local Governments Can Include as Required:

  • Payment of not less than 75 percent of the eligible costs for emergency work and repairing or replacing damaged public facilities, such as roads, bridges, utilities, buildings, schools, recreational areas and similar publicly owned property, as well as certain private non-profit organizations engaged in community service activities. (Source: FEMA funded, commonwealth administered.)
  • Payment of not less than 75 percent of the eligible costs for removing debris from public areas and for emergency measures taken to save lives and protect property and public health.  Emergency protective measures assistance is available to the commonwealth and eligible local governments on a cost-sharing basis for emergency protective measures, including snow assistance, for a continuous 48-hour period during or proximate to the incident period.  (Source: FEMA funded, commonwealth administered). 
  • Payment of not more than 75 percent of the approved costs for hazard mitigation projects undertaken by commonwealth and local governments to prevent or reduce long-term risk to life and property from natural or technological disasters.  (Source: FEMA funded, commonwealth administered)

How to Apply for Assistance:

  • Application procedures for commonwealth and local governments will be explained at a series of federal/commonwealth applicant briefings with locations to be announced in the affected area by recovery officials. Approved public repair projects are paid through the commonwealth from funding provided by FEMA and other participating federal agencies.

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