Jones County works to recover after December floods

Jones County works to recover after December floods

JONES COUNTY, MS (WDAM) - The Jones County Board of Supervisors declared a local emergency over last month’s flooding.

Jones County Emergency Operations Center Director Paul Sheffield told the Board that the county has over $400,000 worth of damage from the floods.

“We have met our threshold,” said Sheffield. “It’s going to depend on Mississippi Emergency Management and FEMA. If they decide that something’s not eligible, they’re start dwindling that number down.”

Sheffield said they are still waiting on the state to officially meet the $4 million threshold for federal assistance. MEMA said in a press conference last week they predict the state has an estimated $5 million worth of damage

“If they hit theirs, we should be able to request a federal declaration and find out after that whether we’re going to get declared in that or not,” said Sheffield.

How much assistance they receive depends on the state, Sheffield said, but supervisors fear the damage goes far deeper than what it appears.

“We’ve got numerous roads that are still down,” said Beat 3 supervisor Barry Saul. “We’ve got numerous roads that the shoulder is washed away which is creating hazardous conditions.”

Saul said he believes there is millions of dollars worth of damage in his beat alone. He said the board had been working on prior infrastructure projects, but now those projects will be delayed.

“This puts us way back,” said Saul. “We have been working for three or four months to receive some bonds proceeds for roads and bridge work, replace some of our worst bridges and, repave and repair some of our worst roads. This natural disaster we’ve had is probably going to take up a large portion of those funds if we do receive them.”

Saul said the board is asking for people to be patient as they work toward recovery.

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