Applying for flood assistance while water is still high - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Applying for flood assistance while water is still high

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ALEXANDER COUNTY (WSIL) -- Leaders have spent days estimating what they've already spent on the flood of 2019 and how much future repairs will cost. 

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) asked Alexander County officials to figure up all of their costs to date and send in paperwork by Thursday. 

Jeff Denny, the county engineer, says its hard to come up with a damage estimate when there are still about 30 miles of road underwater. 

Where the floodwaters have receded, he says there is significant damage that could take years to repair. 

Denny says since so much of the area is still flooded, he'll have to base his estimates off prior experience.

"Some roads, I haven't been able to drive down them, but you can kind of see the ends of them or see parts of them. Then based on what it's done in previous floods, or what you can see, you give your best case, best estimate of what you think it will take to repair it," said Denny.

Denny says in Alexander County alone he believes it will take millions of dollars to repair the damage just to the roads.

IEMA will take the damage reports and pass them off to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to see if Illinois is eligible for assistance. 

In order to qualify for that assistance, Illinois must meet or exceed $19 million in damages. 

Denny says the silver lining is that floodwaters are dropping and he believes the worst of the flooding is behind them. 

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