State Agency Divides $5.3 Million in Federal Disaster Aid

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JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri State Emergency Management Agency worked Monday to divide up a FEMA grant worth more than $5.3 million. The money from this specific grant will go to helping families and individuals that were most impacted by disasters earlier this year. Specifically, the aim of the grant is to help with the long-term recovery process for those specific people selected.

"This is an important part of the recovery proccess. The cleanup, the rebuilding...that part of the recovery is vital. But when you look at what needs to be done to help individuals and families return to their lives, get back in the work force and get the resources they need to fully recover and rebuild their lives. This form of case management is a big part of that," said Scott Holste, spokesman for Gov. Nixon.

Nixon applied for this grant from FEMA in July after a series of disasters hit Missouri this spring and summer.

"I've made it clear that the state of Missouri has a long-term commitment of being there to see that the needs of Missourians who suffered from these disasters are met. This $5 million grant will help Missourians with their long-term recovery and help strengthen our communities as they come back," said Gov. Nixon in a news release.

"Any one of these disasters - the flooding, or the St. Louis tornado, or the Joplin tornado - in and of itself would've been an extremely significant disaster. But when you combine all three, 2011 has just been a year where Missouri has been hit very hard," said Holste.

Gov. Nixon was notified that Missouri would be recieving this grant on Dec. 7. Holste said it will take some time before the money is divided up among families affected by the storms. However, he also said disaster case managers within communities hit the hardest are working to identify who needs what. After the needs are recorded, the money will be divided among the communities, and the people who still need help. The money recieved will be used to provide services through May of 2013.