On Friday, the Wolf Administration provided an update on the Tropical Storm Ida response. As the recovery process gets underway, the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency will assist counties with damage assessments to determine what level of federal support available to Pennsylvania.
The state Department of Transportation estimates that approximately 800 bridges statewide will need post-flood inspections. To complete those inspections as quickly as possible, the department will deploy bridge inspectors and other resources from lesser impacted areas of the state to the most impacted areas.
“PEMA will be cooperating with our partners in local government to conduct damage assessments in as timely a fashion as possible,” said PEMA Director Randy Padfield. “As communities begin cleaning up and making repairs, we want to urge those affected to document their efforts, take pictures of damages and keep copies of their receipts. Having access to these records can be very helpful in obtaining federal recovery assistance, should it be made available.”
To receive a federal disaster declaration for Public Assistance, which provides funding to governments and certain eligible non-profits to repair or replace damaged infrastructure, counties must meet individual thresholds based on population, and the commonwealth overall must meet a threshold of $19.6 million in damages.
Township officials and local emergency management coordinators should work with their county emergency management office to assess and document the damage sustained to township infrastructure and the community.