FEMA funds for flooding?

Relief might soon be in sight for areas hit by flooding in April and early May.
Alex Doty
May 10, 2013


Ottawa County is one of 19 Michigan counties and two cities that were part of Gov. Rick Snyder's "state of disaster" declaration this week. The declaration supports efforts to respond to the severe flooding in parts of Michigan.

“This declaration makes available all the state resources that are needed to continue supporting local officials in their ongoing work to keep the public safe as the recovery efforts begin,” the governor said.

Snyder said the state will explore all possible avenues for assistance to help the effected residents and local governments recover from the floods. The declaration will ensure that all possible resources in accordance with the Michigan Emergency Management Plan are provided to assist the local response to the flooding.

“Just designating these areas as a state of disaster is the first step for financial assistance,” Ottawa County spokeswoman Shannon Felgner said.

Felgner said the flood damage to public property in Ottawa County was mainly in parklands along the Grand River.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has joined state and local officials to assess damaged homes, businesses, public facilities and infrastructure. The Preliminary Damage Assessment process is the first step to assist the state in determining whether a federal declaration should be requested.

Teams will assess damage incurred by homeowners, renters and businesses. The teams will also assess the damage to public infrastructure, as well as the overall impacts to the communities.

The governor's declaration comes at a good time for local communities that were impacted by the flooding.

Residents and business owners impacted by the floods are encouraged to report any damages to their local emergency management agency. Those who did not already submit damage reports can do it online at miottawa.org.

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.



more hand outs...what happend to personal responsibility or better yet insurance. no need for more federal spending.


The only funding that should be given is to move the resident out of the flood plain! Because guess what? Next year, same show! Amazingingly, ere' year, floods! Its like our memories only last one season!


The telling part of this story is that Gov. Snyder and Ottawa County officials believe (the damage to public property in Ottawa County was mainly in parklands along the Grand River) Prior stories stated the beaches in Grand Haven would need assistance with cleanup also. This is the major reason and thrust to capture FEMA funds for use in Ottawa County. Nothing explained that beaches and river front property is dressed up every year for the arriving tourists market.

The real disaster happened throughout West Michigan in certain areas where rainfall was very heavy. Homeowners in many areas experienced unprecedented seepage into their basements due to the rainfall. Many of these homeowners moved into our West Michigan area over the last two decades because Ottawa County is a destination of choice. Without proper central planning elected officials accepted these folks because it meant increases to tax bases all throughout our County and they liked the rapid growth and what it meant to our economies. Officials were unconcerned with the ramifications that lack of storm sewers and county and city drains can accomplish in taking care of weather events like happened as recently as mid April this year. The GRAND RIVER was NOT the problem. The water could not get to the river basin to replenish Lake Michigan in many areas. Opposing government entities have been lacking in reaching any agreement to place needed storm sewers on boundary roads and other areas. People have not been solicited to help themselves and many are experiencing 2nd and 3rd events like this that they are told only happen once in a hundred years. Yes this will cost you no matter how you approach the situation. Do you want the heartache and family disruption again and again.

Is there anything you can do? Yes you get together as a collaborative group and demand that your city, township, and county government begin the process of making the necessary changes. Do not wait for FEMA to bail you out, it will not happen. Louisiana is still waiting for FEMA (how many years?) to help them. You are in charge of your destiny and June is coming; you do not want 9 more inches of rain in 2 days and have to go through the same scenario again.



Post a Comment

Log in to your account to post comments here and on other stories, galleries and polls. Share your thoughts and reply to comments posted by others. Don't have an account on GrandHavenTribune.com? Create a new account today to get started.