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U.S. Department of Transportation, Office of Public Affairs, Washington, D.C., www.dot.gov/affairs/briefing.htm - News

FHWA 31-12
Thursday, July 19, 2012
Contact: Doug Hecox
Tel: 202-366-0660

U.S. Transportation Secretary LaHood Announces $3 Million in Quick Release Emergency Relief Funds for Flood Damage in Minnesota

WASHINGTON - U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood today announced he is making $3 million in quick release emergency funds immediately available to the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) to help repair roads damaged by floods last month.

"Recent flooding disrupted travel in northeastern Minnesota and damaged local roads," said Secretary LaHood. "These emergency relief funds will help Minnesota make repairs and begin restoring critical routes so residents can get where they need to go."

Northeastern Minnesota suffered extreme flooding following two days of heavy rains beginning on June 14 in St. Louis County. The storm's flooding and wind damage near Duluth caused erosion and landslides, severely damaging several sections of TH-2 and TH-210 which provide access to a hydroelectric facility and the Hemlock Ravine Scientific and Natural Area.

"By leaving work crews with a huge mess to clean up and a price tag to match, big storms like this one can cripple communities," said Federal Highway Administrator Victor Mendez. "These funds represent a down payment on our commitment to bringing back transportation in northeastern Minnesota."

Quick release emergency funds provided by the U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) will be used to reimburse the state for repairs that were done to resume essential traffic flow immediately after the flooding and prevent further damage.

FHWA's emergency relief program provides funds for the repair or reconstruction of roads and bridges damaged by natural disasters or catastrophic events.

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