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FEMA, SEMA assess public damage in Newton County - KOAM TV 7

FEMA, SEMA assess public damage in Newton County

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Newton County, Missouri -

A fleet of cars led by a Newton County Emergency Management vehicle traveled all over Newton County assessing damage to public property following the late December storms.

Officials from the county, SEMA and FEMA all were part of the public assistance assessment over the weekend, which took a close look at county roads, bridges, culverts and parks.

"In gathering all the statistics and numbers so that a decision can be made and the request can go to Washington for the President's signature. Nothing has been declared yet, let's put it this way, its in the works, we want to make sure that people understand, it's not signed sealed and delivered," FEMA public information officer Ken Higginbotham said.

Newton County's new director of emergency management, Charla Geller, led the fleet of vehicles around to inspect places such as Condor Drive, Rosebay Road and the low water bridge at Glendale.

"Many of these roads were completely impassible during that time frame we had, then closed, if there's ever a public assistance declaration than those different road districts in the county can ask for some additional assistance back as far as reimbursement to fix the roadways back to the way they were. Not any additional improvements, but to hopefully fix them back to the way they were," Geller said.

Man hours, construction supplies and equipment all go into tabulating the cost of the flood damage. Then, a request for a declaration will be submitted, which would hopefully result in aid from the government or FEMA and SEMA.

Regardless of their findings this weekend, public assistance reimbursements will be a long-term project.

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