The State of Alaska will provide funds to repair public facilities damaged during a storm in early December. A 13.7-foot tide combined with a storm surge in Resurrection Bay to push water above the Lowell Point Road. In total, the storms and tides caused $6.5 million in damage on the Kenai Peninsula, said Jeremy Zidek, a spokesman for the state Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management.
Governor Bill Walker has signed a disaster declaration, opening funds from the state’s public assistance program, lifting the burden from the City of Seward’s shoulders. An application for federal assistance awaits the governor’s approval. With the governor’s signature, that application will go to Washington for the president’s consideration.
A federal disaster declaration would make even more money available.
“If we receive the federal disaster declaration, there will most likely be a cost sharing agreement where the federal government will pay for 75 percent of the cost and the state will pay for 25 percent,” Zidek said.
Federal assistance is common with natural disasters in Alaska, Zidek said.
“Because we are a small state, the threshold for reaching that federal disaster declaration is pretty low,” he said. “It is routine that we do receive it, because of the high cost of construction in Alaska and the nature of our events, which can be pretty rowdy.”