Friday, October 23, 2020

U.S. Transportation Dept. Announces $574 Million in Emergency Relief for Road, Bridge Repairs

By on September 30, 2020

The National Guard on Visual hunt / CC BY

Puerto Rico gets nearly $3.2 million

SAN JUAN – The U.S. Transportation Department announced Wednesday that it will provide $574 million in Emergency Relief (ER) funds to help 39 states and Puerto Rico make repairs to roads and bridges damaged by storms, floods, and other unexpected events. 

The department’s ER program, administered by the Federal Highway Administration, reimburses for expenses associated with damage from natural disasters or other emergency situations. The funds help to pay for the reconstruction or replacement of damaged highways and bridges along with the arrangement of detours and replacement of guardrails or other damaged safety devices. 

The allocated reimbursements for Puerto Rico include nearly $2.2 million for PR17-1 related to Hurricane Maria in 2017, some $916,280 for damage to PR19-1 after heavy rains on May 28-29 last year, and about $70,980 for PR20-1, after the January earthquakes and landslides, for a combined $3,158,987.58.

“This $574 million in federal funding will help states repair and rebuild roads and bridges damaged from natural disasters,” Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said in a news release.

Some of the other reimbursements include:

•    More than $64 million to California, including $34 million for November 2018 wildfires. 
•    More than $46 million to Nebraska for winter storms and flooding in 2019.
•    More than $27 million to Alabama for storms and flooding in 2020. 
•    More than $25 million to Michigan for flooding in the central part of the state in 2020.
•    More than $22 million to Florida for Hurricane Michael in 2018.
•    More than $21 million to North Carolina for Hurricane Dorian in 2019.

“These funds will help reimburse states for needed repairs to vital transportation infrastructure that residents rely upon for daily travel,” said Federal Highway Administrator Nicole R. Nason. 

“Since January 2017, the Trump Administration has provided nearly $4.9 billion in ER program funds to repair roads and bridges,” the release added.

A full list of ER reimbursements can be found here: ERFA and ERFO.