The Finance & Administrative Committee met on 1/30/17 to discuss disaster-related expenses and the process for reimbursement. A future Finance & Administrative Committee meeting later this month will include discussion of potential ways to pay for the expenses. The 1st draft Project Worksheet for FEMA reimbursement of Category A - Public Assistance (Debris Removal) expenses was received from the FEMA project team on Friday, 2/3/17. It is currently under review by staff and once obligated by FEMA will allow for reimbursement through the State EMD.
Thru 2/5/17 +/- 2,036,770 cu yards of debris have been picked up. This is enough debris to fill the Georgia Dome +/- 60%. Compete debris removal is estimated at +/- 2,500,000 cu yards and will fill the Georgia Dome +/- 75%. The first pass has been completed in all areas except roads recently denied by FEMA. Everyone is encouraged to move all remaining debris to the ROW in anticipation of announcement of a final pass starting soon.
A list of stumps (+/- 55 stumps) in ROWs meeting FEMA requirements for reimbursement has been developed. Approval requires sign-off by the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO). Staff and debris removal contractors are +/- 50% complete assessing all areas regarding stump eligibility.
Stormwater Debris Removal
The Town has been awarded an exigency grant from the USDA through the National Resource Conservation Services (NRCS) to clear 11 channels. These channels were identified as highest priority based on stormwater assessment. The grant includes a 10-day work requirement which began 1/31/17. An extension has been awarded through 2/19/17. An additional $1.2 million grant may be available for non-exigency work to include the next +/- 20 priority projects. When all USDA-NRCS funding is exhausted remaining stormwater work will be accomplished through FEMA reimbursement.
Marine Debris Removal
Beaufort County has received an opinion from the State's Attorney General regarding responsibility for removal of marine debris. Based on this opinion the County is intending to declare responsibility with FEMA and proposes to manage marine debris removal county-wide.
Citizen Drop-off Sites
Starting February 20, 2017 hours of operation at the three Citizen Drop-off Sites will be reduced to 3 days a week (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday) from dawn-to-dusk. The volume of debris being collected through these sites is declining. The three sites are US 278 across from Squire Pope Road (Old Gullah Flea Market), Leg Mutton (old concrete plant), and Coligny Beach parking lot.
It is anticipated that the Chaplin Debris Management Site (DMS) will be closing soon and all debris operations transferred to the Honey Horn DMS. This will allow the Chaplin site to be restored in advance of the spring/summer season.
Private Road Debris Removal
The Town has facilitated pick up of debris on roads denied reimbursement by FEMA. It is estimated that this effort is +/- 75% complete.