The Herald Bulletin

Evening Update

Local News

April 27, 2013

Elwood counts on federal assistance

City officials still documenting damage from recent flooding

ELWOOD, Ind. — Most local governments don’t have funds set aside to pay the bills when a natural disaster strikes.

Elwood is a prime example.

Torrential spring rains that swept through Central Indiana last week inundated about three square miles of the northern Madison County city last week. City officials are still assessing damage, but recovery will likely cost millions.

“There is no money appropriated directly for this event,” said Madison County Emergency Management Agency Director Tom Ecker, who spent most of last working with Elwood officials.

“We have a healthy cash-on-hand reserve overall, and I believe we’re in a position to weather what comes our way,” said Mayor Ron Arnold on Friday.

The city isn’t all that different from business and homeowners in attempting to catalog and calculate the cost of the flood.

A new police cruiser was destroyed;  repairs will be required at Callaway Park and its Little League and softball fields; the fence around the city’s skate park must be replaced; and the newly-renovated Bayh Center will need a new floor — again.

In addition, a shed housing city mowers, generators and other equipment was swamped, and city employee overtime bills are mounting, Arnold said.

Like individual homeowners, Arnold is discovering just what will be covered by insurance and what won’t be covered.

Insurance would cover the cost if a sewer line had backed up and damaged city equipment, for instance, but not the same damage caused by last week’s storms because Elwood didn’t have coverage for that.

But that’s where Ecker’s expertise and assistance from Indiana’s Department of Homeland Security can come into play.

By carefully documenting all expenses caused by the flood, Elwood will be in a good position to recover some of its costs through grants and reimbursements. Additional money could become available through the Federal Emergency Management Agency if President Obama approves a federal disaster declaration for Indiana.

“On a major event we look for a declaration from the president, which brings in money to the state to provide grant money for us,” Ecker said. “This is a process we’ve been through many times.”

While the process is long and drawn out, he added, “in the end it’s worth it to the county.”

Find Stu Hirsch on Facebook and @StuHirsch on Twitter, or call 640-4861.

Text Only
Local News
  • Accident.jpg Second person dies following Ind. 9 accident

    A second person has died from injuries following an accident Wednesday on Ind. 9. Clayton Crumley, 21, died at IU Health Methodist Hospital, officials said Thursday.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Appeals Court: Pendleton prison worker harassed Indiana's prison agency forced a former female employee to work in a hostile environment at the Pendleton Correctional Facility, a federal appeals court in Chicago has ruled.

    July 23, 2014

  • NWS - HB0715 - Chuck Pagano Pagano breakfast sold out A breakfast with Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano is sold out, organizers said Wednesday.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • NWS - HB0724 - 4-H Fair morning 2 Work starts at sunrise at 4-H Fair With the skies filled with lightning and the threat of rain on the horizon the Madison County 4-H Fairgrounds was mostly vacant at 6 a.m. Wednesday.

    July 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Ernie's Heart Pet Food Pantry collecting items The community is invited turn its "stuff" into pet food. Ernie's Heart Pet Food Pantry will be collecting "stuff" from downsizing, decluttering and redecorating on Saturday from noon to 4 p.m.

    July 23, 2014

  • Brown awarded $25,200 settlement A federal jury issued a split verdict in the discrimination case filed by Jack Brown against the city of Anderson that alleged violations of his free speech rights and the American Disabilities Act.

    July 24, 2014

  • Arrest Log: July 24 Arrests made by Madison County law enforcement on Tuesday and Wednesday, based on Madison County Jail records.

    July 24, 2014

  • NWS - HB0724 - 4-H fair - 142 Showmanship competition reveals best handler

    With a tug here, a push there, and gentle directional tapping with a small aluminum stick, Savannah Martin of Summitville won Wednesday's Supreme Showman trophy after four rounds directing swine, sheep, goats and steers through various handling exercises.

    July 24, 2014 3 Photos

  • NWS - HB0724 - Messersmith, Justin Man arrested at fair after witnesses say he battered his son A father was arrested at the Madison County 4-H Fair Tuesday night after witnesses said he went too far in disciplining his 4-year-old son.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0725 - Colts arrive - JC - 307a.jpg Wayne arrives in IndyCar for Colts Camp

    Ed Carpenter woke up to rain Wednesday morning and briefly worried his big opportunity might be lost. But the two-time Indianapolis 500 pole-sitter's fear proved to be unfounded. He delivered Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Reggie Wayne safely to Anderson University at the wheel of a two-seat IndyCar.

    July 23, 2014 2 Photos

July Staff Photos

Buy and browse more photos from The Herald Bulletin

More Resources from The Herald Bulletin
Auto Industry Book
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide