Johnson County continues state of emergency related to July storms
The Johnson County Board of County Commissioners approved a continuation of its emergency disaster declaration on Thursday related to the severe storms that hit the area beginning July 14.
The move clears the way for Johnson County to receive potential federal reimbursement for expenses related to the response to the storms. High winds from those storms caused extensive debris, widespread power outages and damages to residences, public buildings and infrastructure across the county.
“Ever since the storms arrived, Johnson County Emergency Management has been working closely with the cities to support restoration and recovery efforts and determine the extent of the damage,” said Dan Robeson, deputy director of emergency management for Johnson County. “This local disaster declaration will help our community be in the best position possible to recover from the storm and potentially recoup some of the related costs.”
While no significant injuries or fatalities occurred as a result of the storms, damages from the storms in Johnson County across 12 impacted cities exceeded $2.7 million. That amount exceeds the threshold at which the Federal Emergency Management Agency would consider public assistance for Johnson County after assessing the request and making a recommendation to President Biden to approve or deny.
Johnson County has now been added to a list of more than forty counties in Kansas to be included in the Governor’s request for a major federal disaster declaration, expected in the next few weeks.
The July storms required cities to take extra measures to manage the large volume of debris, with many cities in the county continuing work for weeks after the storm.
In order to qualify for FEMA Public Assistance, affected counties must declare a local state of disaster emergency. Johnson County’s emergency declaration covers storms beginning on July 14 and is effective through September 30, when it would automatically terminate.