Gov. Bill Ritter has issued an executive order that authorizes up to $1 million in state funds for tornado-recovery efforts in Holly and Prowers County. The funds will cover emergency costs associated with providing temporary housing, mental-health services, infrastructure repairs and other needs.
This news comes in a release from the Governor's office:
“We will continue to do all we can to help the people of Holly,” Gov. Ritter said. “I have been impressed beyond words with their resiliency and strength. Through this executive order, the state will provide financial assistance that addresses the community’s immediate needs.”
The Governor’s Office, the Colorado Department of Local Affairs and the state Division of Emergency Management are working with the Federal Emergency Management Agency on the possible transport 50 mobile homes from the Hurricane Katrina relief zone to Colorado. The mobile homes would be partially furnished.
The March 28 tornado damaged 164 homes, more than one-third of the homes in Holly. Forty-eight homes were destroyed or severely damaged and are considered uninhabitable.
Ritter’s executive order also authorizes:
· The Department of Local Affairs to identify additional funds for the repair and reconstruction of publicly owned facilities and infrastructure. Funding sources could include state energy and mineral impact funds, federal Community Development and Community Service Block Grants, and Small Business Administration Loans.
· The Department of Human Services to expend Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) funds in excess of the funds allocated to Prowers County to assist those impacted by the disaster.
· The Department of Human Services to expend funds to help provide emergency housing to those displaced by the disaster.
· The Colorado Department of Transportation to waive overweight and oversize permit fees for trucks providing disaster assistance, including those removing debris and delivering supplies and other materials for recovery efforts.
The governor also thanked state Reps. Cory Gardner and Wes McKinley and Sen. Greg Brophy for their work on disaster-relief efforts.