The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has awarded the City of Springfield $13,608,495.75 in federal funding relating to the tornado of 2011.
The funding is being awarded to the City as a result of a damages sustained to the Howard Street Armory building during the 2011 tornado. The funding is available through the Sandy Recovery Improvement Act, intended to renovate or replace facilities destroyed or damaged as a result of natural disasters, and is authorized under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act. Through the Stafford Act, the Public Assistance (PA) Program allows FEMA to implement alternative procedures through a pilot program, which the City and the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) submitted a request to participate in.
The application to the PA was in effort to accelerate the rebuilding efforts and reestablish community services that were displaced due to the damage inflicted to the building. The total amount of $18,144,661 million was determined as a settlement for repairs of the Armory building, and the $13,806,495.75 represents FEMA’s 75% reimbursement amount. The City will use the funding to cover costs associated with two improved projects approved by FEMA, the South End Community Center and the Senior Center.
Throughout this process, the City has worked closely with FEMA as this groundbreaking pilot program navigated through many federal reviews, one of which included an important partnership with State and City Historical Preservation that resulted in the City taking measures to preserve the rich history of the original Springfield Armory.