State Conservationist for USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service in Indiana Jane Hardisty has announced that disaster assistance is available to repair damage in the Town of Newburgh following the 2011 spring flooding in Warrick County. Funds in the amount of $380,000 are expected to be made available through the Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) program. The program will contract heavy construction work to local contractors, spurring creation of jobs. This announcement follows the US Department of Agriculture’s announcement last week that 20 states would receive $19.7 million to meet additional disaster recovery assistance needs expressed by states. Congress set up EWP to respond to emergencies created by natural disasters. Earlier this year, NRCS distributed $215 million to 26 states to assist in disaster recovery projects around the nation. Indiana also received dollars from that first round of funding to repair a channel on Prairie Creek in Washington County. Additional EWP funding is anticipated due to the recent tornado damage in southeast Indiana.
Hardisty and State Conservation Engineer Mike Cox met with Newburgh Town officials and Senator Lugar’s field staff earlier this month to let them know the project had been approved for funding. Hardisty states, “The problem with the hill slippage occurred with last spring’s heavy rains and local drainage problems. These funds will cover the engineering and construction work to stabilize the slope.” She goes on to say, “When a slide like this occurs, it needs to be dealt with to keep it from continuing to erode and causing the whole area to become unstable with each additional rainfall.”
Disaster recovery projects are administered by NRCS in partnership with local sponsors, often municipal or county governments. NRCS pays up to 75 percent of the construction costs while the remaining 25 percent is obtained by local sponsors, such as the county government. When funding is dedicated to a project, contracts for construction work are awarded to local companies, spurring job creation. To learn more about EWP or see a list of the states and their funding allocations, visit https://www.in.nrcs.usda.gov. EWP is described under Programs.
EWP funds help rebuild communities with direct financial support and technical assistance. This funding will allow NRCS to work with local partners to repair flood damages, protect water quality, and help rebuild the community in Warrick County.
For information about other NRCS conservation programs, visit https://www.in.nrcs.usda.gov/programs, or visit the nearest USDA Service Center in your area. To locate your nearest NRCS office, visit https://offices.sc.egov.usda.gov/locator/app?agency=nrcs.
Jane Hardisty, State Conservationist, 317.295.5801 (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Mike Cox, State Conservation Engineer, 317.295.5853 (email@example.com)
Rebecca Fletcher, State Public Affairs Specialist, 317.295.5825 (firstname.lastname@example.org)