Benton, Carroll, Smith Counties to get federal aid for tornado damage

Posted at 9:48 PM, Mar 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-25 22:59:02-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Three Tennessee counties will also receive federal assistance following the deadly tornadoes that hit the mid-state in early March.

Governor Bill Lee announced Wednesday that Benton, Carroll and Smith Counties will be included in the state's Major Disaster Declarations.

“These counties will now receive federal reimbursement assistance for their costs related to damaged infrastructure and recovery measures,” Gov. Lee said. “We continue to work closely with our federal partners to help our counties and communities receive rebuilding and recovery help.”

It also makes the included counties (Benton, Carroll, Davidson, Putnam, Smith, and Wilson) eligible for federal reimbursement in all categories of the federal PA program. All damage to county roads, bridges, water control facilities, buildings, equipment, utilities, and parks are eligible for federal reimbursement.

The six declared counties reported more than $68 million in estimated impacts to county infrastructure and for costs associated with counties’ response and recovery measures.

This estimated total impact to local governments includes $32 million for Davidson County, $17 million for Wilson, $5 million for Putnam, $400,000 in Smith, and more than $200,000 each in Benton and Carroll. Agencies of the State of Tennessee estimated more than $11 million in estimated cost impact.

A press release from the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency says the March 3 tornadoes damaged or destroyed more than 4,000 structures, including five public schools, left 101,521 residents without power, and closed State Government offices.