Mississippi News

Additional assessments underway to build case for federal assistance

The Mississippi Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) has requested additional damage assessments following the June 18-19 severe weather and tornadoes. After assessing damage in Jackson and Jasper Counties, FEMA found the State has not met its damage threshold of $5.2 million in order to request a federal disaster declaration. The two counties’ public infrastructure damage amount was $4.1 million in eligible costs.

Currently, FEMA is assessing public infrastructure damage in 14 additional counties: Claiborne, Copiah, Covington, Jefferson, Jefferson Davis, Lawrence, Leake, Neshoba, Newton, Rankin, Scott, Simpson, Smith, and Wayne. These 14 counties are NOT being assessed for individual assistance, only public assistance. (Other counties may be added as local governments complete their assessments.)

“Our goal is to build the strongest case possible so that we will get a “Yes” when we request federal assistance. We are not there yet, but we hope to meet our threshold with those additional damage numbers. Citizens are frustrated and looking for help, but recovery is always a long process.  MEMA is doing everything it can to build a case for those impacted citizens who need assistance,” says MEMA Executive Director Stephen McCraney.

Currently, FEMA Assistance is NOT available for Jackson and Jasper County residents.

The State’s original deadline to request a disaster declaration was July 20. MEMA has requested a time extension of two additional weeks to request federal assistance.

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