WASHINGTON D.C. Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) announced that the Grundy County REC Electrical Retrofit has been awarded $2,261,250 from the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Hazard Mitigation Program (HMP). The funds will be used to improve and strengthen 67 miles of electrical distribution lines to better withstand the effects of ice and snow in Black Hawk, Grundy, Marshall and Tama Counties.
Harkin was the chief sponsor of legislation that greatly expanded FEMA's HMP following the floods of 1993. The program provides grants to states and local governments to implement long-term hazard mitigation measures after a major disaster declaration. The purpose of the HMP is to reduce the loss of life and property due to natural disasters and to enable mitigation measures to be implemented during the immediate recovery from a disaster.
"As Iowans recover from the recent snow storms, we are reminded of the impact that weather can have on our rural infrastructure, especially during the harsh Iowa winters," said Harkin. "These federal funds will support improvements to electric lines, enhancing the reliability of rural electric power in these counties and lower costs to the Grundy REC's customers."