County Council to revisit FEMA funds for storm recovery

  • Posted: Tuesday, April 1, 2014 12:01 a.m.

Aiken County Council will consider again an ordinance appropriating what could be more than $2 million from the current budget's general fund to use for Winter Storm Pax recovery efforts at its meeting today.

The third and final reading of this ordinance will take place at Council's regular public meeting, which starts at 7 p.m.

Council tabled final reading of the ordinance in mid-March after County Administrator Clay Killian asked Council to defer it. Killian met with representatives from the Federal Management Emergency Agency, or FEMA, as well as the S.C. Emergency Management Division to discuss funding applications for Aiken County to receive federal aid.

Winter Storm Pax, which dropped more than one inch of ice on Aiken County and caused mass power outages across the state, struck on Feb. 11. By Feb. 24, crews had begun recovery efforts, collecting debris in 28 zones established in Aiken County.

The County's contractor, Southern Disaster Recovery, leads the effort after Council approved an agreement with the Greer-based company.

As of March 23, contractors have collected about 409,538 cubic yards (about 82 percent of total estimated debris) and expect another 33 days of collection until all debris has been removed, according to the Aiken County website.

Officials have said the County will spend between $8 million and $10 million for overall cleanup, and so far contractors estimate the total cost at about $10 million, according to Killian. The County will get a 75 percent reimbursement from FEMA.

The state is expected to pick up the remaining 25 percent of the cost to cover emergency and recovery operations. The aid covers public entities, but will not cover individual claims made by homeowners.

In other business, Council will hold a first reading of an amendment to rezone 18 tax parcels along roads including Whiskey Road.

The meeting begins at 7 p.m. today in Council Chambers, located at 736 Richland Ave. W.

For more information about Aiken County's debris removal process, visit www.aikencountysc.gov.

Maayan Schechter is the local government reporter with Aiken Standard. Follow her on Twitter @MaayanSchechter.

Comments { }

Commenting rules: Do not post offensive, racial or violent messages. Responsibility for the statements posted lies with the commenter, not www.aikenstandard.com. Click 'report abuse' for any comments that you feel should be removed from the site. However, www.aikenstandard.com is not obligated to remove any comment posted on the site. Moderators do not have the ability to edit comments. Read the terms of use.