Mariposa County to receive emergency funding for March floods

MARIPOSA, Calif. (KFSN) -- Mariposa County will soon get state emergency money after Governor Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency for areas destroyed my March floods.

"If we would've had to fund this entirely ourselves it would've put a severe hardship on county finances," Mariposa Co. Public Works Director Mike Healy said.

A torrential storm damaged more than 40 roads. Floodwaters caused two fatalities. County Supervisor, Kevin Cann, said the state could cover up to 75 percent of the county's repair costs.

"It took the governor almost three weeks to declare an emergency. We were very concerned about that because we were really hanging out there financially," Cann said.

Healy estimates more than $10 million dollars worth of damage from this year's storm. He said they're finally starting to see some of the emergency money they were granted for a storm in February 2017. Cal OES officials said, so far, Mariposa County has gotten more than $500,000.

"We had all about a total of 58 or 59 different projects. All but about a handful have been approved. We've received all of our small project funding with the exception of one or two," Healy said.

However, Cann said after the delay in FEMA funds, they decided not to wait and use their own emergency reserve for the repairs

"We authorized with our own money. We didn't wait for state money or the federal money. We authorized those repairs with our own money hoping to be reimbursed. We tried to barrage the governor," Cann said.

Public works officials said they immediately hired contractors after the storm to make temporary fixes along roadways. They hope to make permanent repairs throughout the summer

Merced and Tuolumne counties were also part of the declaration.

Damaged roads in La Grange could reopen as early as next week.
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