After an exhaustive assessment of damages caused by the July 19-20 storm in Vermont, state officials have determined there does not exist enough loss for the state to request a federal disaster declaration. However, state resources could be available to communities to help cover the cost of repairing roads.
The Vermont Division of Emergency Management & Homeland Security (DEMHS), Agency of Transportation (VTrans), Agency of Natural Resources (ANR), and Regional Planning Commissions (RPCs) worked with communities since the storm to determine the monetary value of damages to public roads, bridges, and other infrastructure. The total eligible damage is tallied at approximately $750,000 — short of the $1-million minimum damages the state is required to meet in order to request federal assistance.
“VTrans District Techs visited towns to assess damage and offer technical advice, and RPCs reached out to towns to compile damage reports. The good news is damage is limited — outside of Barre City, Barre Town, and the town of Plainfield,” Vermont Public Safety Deputy Commissioner Joe Flynn said. “However, the news is unfortunate for those towns that suffered damage in the storm as they will not receive federal assistance for repairs.”
Cities and towns with damage are encouraged to contact their VTrans District Technician to discuss potential state emergency transportation grant funding to defray the cost of repairs to public road and bridge infrastructure.
Private homeowners should report any damage to their city or town. Assistance is available in the form of clean-up kits and volunteers. Please call 2-1-1 if you need help; 2-1-1 will compile information for the state and organizations providing those resources. Volunteer organizations will begin helping with the removal of mud and other debris from homes on Thursday.
To qualify for a Public Assistance (PA) disaster declaration under the Federal Stafford Act Vermont must show at least $1-million in eligible costs for local roads, public buildings, and other assets.