U.S. Senators Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), with Representative Alan Nunnelee (R-Miss.), today signaled their support for the distribution of $1.95 million in new funding to the City of Tupelo for tornado damage debris removal.
The lawmakers announced the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) funding, which will support Tupelo's ongoing recovery from a deadly April 28 tornado. The award, funded through the FEMA Disaster Recovery Fund, is being made in accordance with the FEMA Public Assistance guidelines for eligible debris removal.
"We are all committed to seeing that Tupelo recovers from the direct hit it took in April. This grant is indicative of FEMA and the state of Mississippi, acting as partners with city leaders, continuing to assess that recovery process and offer assistance," said Cochran, who as a senior member of the Senate Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee has worked to ensure that sufficient funding is available in the FEMA Disaster Relief Fund to support estimated costs associated with an average disaster year.
"This important funding represents another big step forward in our effort to restore and rebuild Tupelo," Wicker said. "I am pleased that federal, state, and local agencies continue to work together to provide residents and businesses the support they need."
"I am proud of the people of Tupelo and the determination I have seen to continue to move forward after the April tornadoes. During the storms, local, state and federal officials were quick to work together in early detection and advanced warning and it saved lives," said Nunnelee. "This grant announcement is a reflection of an important collaborative relationship that I am pleased continues today."
The new $1.95 million grant represents an 80 percent federal share of the total $2.43 million associated with this application for assistance. The Mississippi Emergency Management Agency will cover the remaining 20 percent of the cost, pursuant to a law approved during a special session of the legislature following the storm.
FEMA awarded a similar $1.39 million grant to Tupelo in early August for eligible debris removal.
FEMA Public Assistant Grants provide supplemental disaster assistance to state, local and tribal governments, and certain types of private, nonprofit organizations for debris removal, emergency protective measures, and the repair, replacement, or restoration of disaster-damaged, publicly owned facilities.