Flood-related damages throughout the county far exceed the threshold the government requires for federal assistance when an area is declared a disaster, the Ozark County commissioners said during their weekly meeting Monday morning.
Eastern District Commissioner Gary Collins and Western District Commissioner Greg Donley met with disaster assessment teams Saturday, showing them a sampling of the damage to county roads and bridges.
Collins said after he showed the team the bridges and areas around the Dawt Mill Bridge, Warren Bridge and Spring Creek, team members told Collins they didn’t need to see anymore. At that point, the team estimated the county had more than $1 million in damages just in those three areas, far exceeding the $30,000 threshold for assistance qualification.
Donley said he was also told the team didn’t need to see more after he had shown them only two areas – the bridges on Highway 95 at Souder and County Road 835 Barren Fork .
“It’s hard to really estimate just how much total damage there is in the county,” Collins said. “It’s just so much.”
The teams will now report to Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens, and he will decide which counties to designate as disaster areas, the commissioners said. The governor’s recommendation will then go to the president.
Speaking from the experience of dealing with seven other disasters in the past few years, Donley warns residents not to get their hopes up about the county receiving the money soon. “We won’t get the money quickly,” he said. “Probably at the quickest, and if everything goes smooth, it will be at least six months before we see any funds….
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