Hurricane Katrina Forest Recovery

As we work together to tackle the historic challenge that Hurricane Katrina has presented to the forestry communities of Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama, we hope that this blog will be a valuable resource and tool.

Thursday, January 25

FEMA Issues Hurricane Recovery Grants

Federal funding totaling more than $32 million has been awarded for Hurricane Katrina recovery costs.

The grants, administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), are awarded to the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), City of Biloxi, City of Waveland, Jackson County, St. Stanislaus College Preparatory School and Pearl River Community College for the costs associated with hurricane recovery.

The awards are:

o MEMA (approximately $18.4 million) -- MEMA requested and received emergency management assistance personnel, equipment, and materials from other states in order to save lives, protect public health and safety, and to prevent further damage to improved public and private property. A total of 247 mission requests were made to the State of Florida for which Florida will bill the State of Mississippi. This approximately $18.4 million along with $15 million previously provided on version one, represents funding for the labor, equipment and material expenses for 18 mission requests to the State of Florida. The amount also covers the costs associated with transporting and storing these items.

o City of Waveland (approximately $5.3 million) -- This funding is to make permanent repairs to the roads damaged by the sewer line replacement south of the railroad tracks in the City of Waveland. These repairs are identified at 83 separate locations and include replacing approximately 24.46 miles of roadway surfaces consisting of both concrete and asphalt. These surfaces were damaged during the utility work primarily because replacement of sewer lines involved digging trenches through the road surface to access the sewer lines.

o City of Biloxi (approximately $2.8 million -- Katrina fractured piles and broke apart the Old Highway 90 Fishing Pier, requiring complete removal. The pier served as the Biloxi side of the former U.S. 90 bridge from Biloxi to Ocean Springs built in 1930, and was converted into a fishing pier when the new bridge was constructed in the 1960s. This funding will serve to remove and dispose of all remnants of the damaged bridge located both above and below the water line. The total amount of debris to be removed and disposed of has been estimated at 16,302 cubic yards.

o Jackson County (approximately $2.6 million) -- Katrina destroyed the Ocean Springs Fishing Pier and its approach. This pier, located on the east side of the Biloxi Bay, extended out from Ocean Springs into the bay 2,196 feet. The pier was originally the Jackson County side of the U.S. 90 bridge between Ocean Springs and Biloxi. This section of bridge was turned over to Jackson County to be used as a fishing pier when a new bridge was constructed in the 1960s. This funding represents the estimated project cost to construct a new pre-cast concrete fishing pier 24.5 feet wide and 2,165 feet long. In addition, it provides for a turnaround at the pier's end for emergency vehicles and a new approach measuring 160 feet long and 30 feet wide.

o St. Stanislaus College Preparatory School (approximately $1.9 million) -- The St. Stanislaus College Preparatory Student Union Building suffered damage from Katrina. This two-story structure serves as a nonreligious education center for students from grades six through 12. This approximately $2.1 million is the estimated project amount, less insurance proceeds, to repair the Student Union Building to its pre-disaster condition. A hazard mitigation proposal of approximately $176,635 is also included to flood-proof the electrical and mechanical rooms to prevent future flood damage.

o Pearl River Community College (approximately $1.3 million) -- Among the buildings and infrastructure damaged by Katrina was the Marvin H. White Coliseum on the Poplarville campus. This grant is prepared to bring the coliseum to its pre-disaster design, capacity and function at a total estimated cost of approximately $1.5 million, less estimated insurance proceeds. -MBJ


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