State Officials Tour City, Observe Storm Damage

By: Mark Tenia Email
By: Mark Tenia Email

July 13, 2010

Weeks after a strong storm rocked the Charlottesville area, the city is hoping to get some help to pay for the damage.

The Virginia Department of Emergency Management is surveying the damage and visiting damaged areas before deciding whether the state will help pick up the tab.

The cost of the storm damage is still being tallied as the city and the University of Virginia continue to clean up the mess.

Weeks later, much of the debris still remains. VDEM went on tour with officials from Charlottesville and UVa to assess the damage.

A meeting took place between local emergency management officials and VDEM before the tours. The unusual storm's occurring in Charlottesville proved to be a unique situation for state officials.

"I did ask them how many times this had happened in the past across the state, where there wasn't a federal declaration and how it's worked out, and they said for them this was the first time," said Marge Thomas, Charlottesville's emergency services coordinator.

From there, Thomas said VDEM will take all the information that has been provided to them from pictures, documents and the tour and will forward the information to the governor's office.

"Hopefully, the governor will say, 'OK, you're the exception here, you've had a great deal of damage, hopefully you'll get some funds back,'" Thomas said.

If help doesn't come, the city and UVa will be stuck paying for a bill that continues to build up, much like the pile of debris they continue to clear.

The city's public works department said it will be weeks before it has a final estimate of how much the storm has cost.

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