Danville Area School District Awarded $1.6 Million for Disaster Recovery
WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Lou Barletta (PA-11) announced that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will award $1,682,066.66 in additional federal funding to the Danville Area School District for repairs to the middle school building in order to repair damage sustained during Tropical Storm Lee.
The federal share of the $2,242,755.55 necessary for repairs amounts to 75 percent of the total project cost, relieving local resources from the costly aftermath of this disaster.
“Danville Area School District is extremely pleased that the federal government has released the funding from the 2011 flood,” Superintendent Jason Bendle said following the announcement. “This money replaces district funds that were used during the Middle School renovation. We appreciate our local legislator’s support with moving the process forward.”
“As chairman of the subcommittee with jurisdiction over disaster relief and FEMA, I understand how critical these resources are for local communities and am very pleased the school has finally been provided this vital funding,” said Barletta. “Moving forward, we must invest before disaster strikes to lessen the impact of each storm. Infrastructure projects like the flood wall in Bloomsburg demonstrate important investments we can make before disaster strikes to save lives and taxpayer dollars.”
Barletta has long been an advocate of investing in pre-disaster mitigation. In December 2017, language from his bill, the Disaster Recovery Reform Act (DRRA), passed the House as part of H.R. 4667, which makes further supplemental appropriations for Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria.
The DRRA makes critical reforms to FEMA’s disaster response and recovery programs that will help our communities better prepare for, respond to, recover from, and mitigate against disasters of all kinds.
In particular, the DRRA increases the federal emphasis on pre-disaster planning and mitigation, which will reduce the future loss of life and the rising costs of disasters throughout America. Furthermore, the DRRA incentivizes building and rebuilding better and smarter to facilitate speedy recovery efforts whenever and wherever disaster does strike.
Mitigation can encompass a wide variety of activities, including proactive preparation and planning, elevating or moving structures prone to flooding, and hardening structures to mitigate effects of hurricanes or earthquakes.
A recent study showed the major savings form Barletta’s legislation. The National Institute of Building Sciences released findings from a new report detailing the value of pre-disaster mitigation. The study found that every $1 the federal government spends on pre-disaster mitigation, $6 in future disaster costs are saved. This is up from the organization’s 2005 study that found a one to four savings ratio.
More information about the DRRA can be found online HERE.