Albany County Commissioners Sign Emergency Declaration
The Albany County Commissioners have signed an emergency declaration, beginning a process to be considered for additional funds to repair northern county roads damaged by flooding.
The commissioners voted to sign the emergency declaration during Tuesday’s meeting.
Aimee Binning, Albany County Emergency Management Coordinator, says an emergency declaration does not put the county in a state of emergency as was initially reported.
“If we had a declaration that was called a state of emergency, it has a different meaning than an emergency declaration,” says Binning. “An emergency declaration is a procedural term for a declaration that is signed by either a city or a county that helps identify them as being beyond their current means for addressing the emergency at hand.”
Binning says that flooding that occurred between May 23 and June 5, 2015 caused approximately $700,000 worth of damage to Fletcher Park, Palmer Canyon, and Cottonwood Roads. Binning says the county's road and bridge funds won't cover the repair costs.
The emergency declaration signed by the commissioners begins a process to possibly get funding for those road repairs.
“We know that our budget is limited. Procedurally, the next step in order to get considered for assistance is to do the declaration at the county level, and then the next procedure is to get a declaration at the state level if they find that they have enough expenses,” says Binning. “And then the third step would be a declaration by the president.”
Binning says Albany County Road and Bridge has been able to repair the roads to a point that the public can drive on them, but the culvert and drainage systems were heavily impacted by the flooding.
If approved for funding, repairs on the roads would include culverts being repaired or replaced, the addition of new materials on the roads, and fixed drainage systems.