Gov. Jay Nixon today visited Emerson Elementary School to announce that his administration is providing $2.8 million to the Joplin Schools. The overwhelming majority of these funds will help construct severe weather safe rooms to benefit students from five local schools.
"When severe weather strikes, preparation is key to saving lives," Gov. Nixon said. "This investment in safe rooms at the Joplin Schools will help ensure that we are prepared to act quickly to protect Joplin's children in the event of severe weather in the future. This is another step in our ongoing commitment to help Joplin recover, rebuild and move forward nearly one year after the devastating tornado. We will continue to stand with the people of Joplin at every stage of this recovery process."
Of the funds announced by Gov. Nixon today, $2.3 million will go toward construction of safe rooms to benefit students from five local schools: Cecil Floyd Elementary, Emerson Elementary, New Irving Elementary, East Middle, and Joplin High. These safe rooms will be constructed through a partnership of the state, local and federal governments.
The total project cost is $26.3 million. The federal government will pay 75 percent of the cost ($19.7 million); local officials will pay $4.2 million; and the state will pay $2.3 million.
The remaining $527,500 will assist with the demolition of 90 properties surrounding the Joplin High School campus, which will allow construction of the new high school to proceed.
"We appreciate Gov. Nixon's ongoing support of the Joplin Schools and our entire community throughout this recovery process," said C. J. Huff, superintendent of Joplin Schools. "Immediately after the storm, Gov. Nixon said he'd be standing with us every step of the way, and he's lived up to his word - even one year after the tornado. Investing in these safe rooms is an investment in the safety of our children and the future of our community."