February 12, 2013

Manchin, Rockefeller, Rahall Announce Federal Highway Funds for Storm-Related Highway Repairs in West Virginia

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall (D-W.Va.), along with Senators Jay Rockefeller and Joe Manchin (both D-W.Va.), announced Tuesday that the State of West Virginia has been awarded $1.4 million in emergency relief funds by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for repair or reconstruction of Federal-aid highways and roads that suffered serious damage as a result of storm damage in 2012.

"The destruction that Mother Nature unleashed on us last year caused significant and repeat damage to our State’s roads and transportation infrastructure, taking a significant economic toll on our state and local governments, as well as our families and businesses.  These Federal emergency relief funds will help our State to repair the damage to highways and roads and move us further along the path toward recovery," said Rahall, top Democrat on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.

“Flooding last year heavily damaged West Virginia roads—damage that still exists today. Addressing those problem areas will mean better safety for our travelers and more wholly restored communities,” said Senator Rockefeller, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, which has jurisdiction over the Department of Transportation. “I am so pleased that DOT recognizes the hardship West Virginians continue facing.”

"The storms that have passed through West Virginia in the past year have brought unseen destruction to our great state,” Senator Manchin said. “Heavy winds, rain and snow have caused severe damage to our roads and infrastructure that we are still working to repair today. I am encouraged that this grant will help our communities get back to normal.”

Congress authorized an Emergency Relief program within the U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, for the repair or reconstruction of Federal-aid highways and roads on Federal lands that have suffered serious damage as a result of natural disasters or catastrophic failures from an external cause.  These funds are awarded to a State after the President or the Governor issues a formal emergency declaration and the State files a request for emergency relief for the cost of damages to eligible highways. 

Eligible repair work includes emergency repairs needed to restore essential traffic, minimize the extent of damage, or protect the remaining facilities, as well as permanent repairs necessary to restore the highway to its pre-disaster condition.