Needs for county emergency reimbursement
First melting and now recovering from March’s snow storm. Counties used a bulk of costly resources to fight more than a foot of snow.
Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear even initiated a state of emergency and deployed the national guard for help.
But how to get that money back, some local counties depend on reimbursement in these emergencies to function.
With two snowstorms and a spent $27,000, volunteers and city employees like Guy Johnson believe given the amount of work he’s put in, it’s likely the county will get paid back. Johnson says they used back hoes, tractors, and everything else the county and its people had to fight the snow. He says he and his guys have worked 21 days straight from the two snow storms, “We don’t have the resources bigger cities have to get out and get equipment .”
Ballard County Judge Executive Vickie Viniard says it’s imperative for her small county to surpass the threshold for reimbursement. Viniard says they’ve filed two state of emergencies and will wait to hear back on this second round, “This comes out of our money to operate the day to day operations and getting that money back just helps us to carry on our operations.”
Viniard says they have to stay diligent to document all their expenses so the county and their workers like Johnson can continue to ‘get it done’, “Our community’s really tight knit and they came in, pitched in all they could do.”
Cities also help contribute to the total amount when a state of emergency is declared, and in this instance – if Kentucky chooses to seek help from the federal level – counties will also help contribute to the state’s levels.
Road crews, emergency management, employee time clocks, salt levels, and even volunteer time are all factored into the county’s emergency assistance threshold. Every threshold is calculated on the county’s population.