CAMDEN COUNTY, Mo. — It turns out Camden County will get a share of disaster re-imbursement from FEMA to dig out from the financial burden of two feet of snowfall.

When Gov. Jay Nixon first announced that President Barak Obama made federal funds available to the state, Camden and Pike counties were absent from the list of 59 eligible counties. Camden County Presiding Commissioner Kris Franken said he immediately started making phone calls to find out why.

“Although no one has given me a definite answer, it appears that it was simply an oversight. Since we were included in the original request for assistance by Gov. Nixon, and since we certainly met the criteria with our snowfall, I’m sure that’s all it was. I’m just happy that we will be getting the assistance - although I’m not quite sure how much we’ll be getting,” he said.

Franken explained that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) policy states assistance is available on a cost-sharing basis for emergency protective measures, including snow removal, for a continuous 48-hour period during the incident period. However, that policy allows reimbursement for a continuous 72-hour period for those counties that received 150% of the record snowfall as identified by the National Weather Service. Although the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) certified Camden County as receiving a record snowfall, Franken said he did not know if the county hit the 150% mark.

“We spent approximately $300,000 - nearly 5 percent of our annual budget - but if we get to claim only our highest 48-hour period, it looks like that number would be around $115,000. There have been about four different declarations made and I’m not sure yet which one they’re going with,” he said.

John Jenkins, chairman of the Horseshoe Bend Special Road District Board of Directors, said he had just about given up hope that they would be reimbursed any of the $60,000 they spent.

“We turned our paperwork in on time but never heard anything more so I figured we didn’t meet the qualifications. I’m very happy to learn different,” Jenkins said. “With all the projects we have going on we certainly have a use for the money!”

Osage Beach City Administrator Nancy Viselli said the municipality has communicated preliminary information with the county and has until April 22 to complete the full application for reimbursement of approximately $3,400.

“The ‘guidelines’ were pretty specific, and some of the items really aren’t worth getting reimbursed for, because the paperwork and audit procedures are cost prohibitive,” she said.

Franken said in order to obtain the reimbursement, eligible agencies either have to attend public assistance briefings or they have to authorize the Camden County Emergency Management Agency Director Denise Russell to make application on their behalf. He said he plans to attend the March 31 meeting at the Laclede County to make sure he understands the process.

In advance of the storm Gov. Nixon declared a state of emergency. The order activated the Missouri State Emergency Operations Plan, which allowed state agencies to assist local jurisdictions with emergency preparation and response. The governor also activated 600 members of the Missouri National Guard to provide help where it was needed most.

Counties included in the order were Adair, Andrew, Audrain, Barton, Bates, Benton, Boone, Caldwell, Callaway, Carroll, Cass, Cedar, Chariton, Clark, Clinton, Cole, Cooper, Dade, Dallas, DeKalb, Grundy, Henry, Hickory, Howard, Johnson, Knox, Laclede, Lafayette, Lewis, Linn, Livingston, Macon, Madison, Maries, Marion, McDonald, Miller, Moniteau, Monroe, Montgomery, Morgan, Newton, Osage, Pettis, Platte, Polk, Pulaski, Putnam, Ralls, Randolph, Ray, St. Clair, Saline, Schuyler, Scotland, Shelby, Sullivan, Vernon and Worth.