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Todd County included in disaster area

Twenty-four flood-affected counties - including Todd County - and two tribal governments were added to the federal disaster declaration secured by Governor Mark Dayton on July 21, according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Division of...

Twenty-four flood-affected counties – including Todd County – and two tribal governments were added to the federal disaster declaration secured by Governor Mark Dayton on July 21, according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEM).
HSEM Director Kris Eide requested FEMA add 30 counties to the disaster declaration; information and data regarding six of those counties is still being reviewed.
The 24 counties and two tribal governments approved for federal assistance are Beltrami, Blue Earth, Brown, Carver, Dodge, Faribault, Koochiching, Lac qui Parle, Lake of the Woods, Le Sueur, Marshall, Martin, McLeod, Nicollet, Redwood, Rice, Roseau, Scott, Sibley, Steele, Todd, Wadena, Waseca, and Yellow Medicine counties and the tribal governments of the Red Lake Band of Chippewa and Prairie Island Indian Community. The six counties under review are: Dakota, Hennepin, Lyon, Ramsey, Watonwan, and Wright.
The approved counties are eligible for two categories of aid:
● Public assistance: Assistance to state and local government and certain private not for profit organizations for emergency work and repair or replacement of disaster-damaged facilities. This applies within counties in the disaster area.
● Hazard Mitigation Grant Program: Assistance to state and local government and certain private not for profit organizations for actions taken to prevent or reduce long-term risk to life and property from natural hazards. All counties in Minnesota are eligible to apply for assistance under this program.
Under a presidential disaster declaration, FEMA will fund 75 percent of approved costs. The state of Minnesota will fund the non-federal share. Eligible work can include debris removal, emergency services related to the disaster and repair or replacement of damaged public facilities such as roads, bridges, buildings, utilities and recreation areas.

NEXT STEPS
Counties in the federal disaster declaration will engage in the following process with state/federal emergency management officials.
● Applicant briefing. The Department of Public Safety will hold informational meetings for local officials in affected communities to explain the process and provide preliminary paperwork. All requests for public assistance must be filed with the state within 30 days after the area is designated eligible for assistance.
● Kickoff meeting. FEMA will return to the affected communities to meet with aid applicants to develop an action plan for disaster recovery.
● Recovery project planning. FEMA and the Minnesota Department of Public Safety will develop a project worksheet for each project that clearly defines the work to be done and the projected costs.

Al Edenloff is the editor of the twice-weekly Echo Press. He started his journalism career when he was in 10th grade, writing football and basketball stories for the Parkers Prairie Independent.
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