GEORGETOWN, Texas (KXAN) — Williamson County Judge Bill Gravell said the county expects the bill for storm damage could reach $15-$20 million in just a few months.
This week Williamson County Commissioners extended the county’s disaster declaration which gives it the opportunity to be reimbursed by the federal government for ice storm recovery costs.
Currently, the county estimates it’s already spent $12 million on recovery, most efforts going toward brush pickup and disposal.
Judge Gravell said a lot of the money being spent for recovery has come out of a ‘rainy day’ fund.
He said the county does not budget for emergencies per say, but has used this same fund for past disaster relief.
Gravell said the county’s commissioner’s court has put money into that fund over the years it anticipated using for surprise expenses including disasters.
Some of those recent disasters being the COVID-19 pandemic, 2021 February freeze, and several tornadoes over the last few years.
“In my last four years as County Judge I call it a disaster fund because on occasion we’ve had to dip into it. And we will dip into it on this occasion,” Gravell said.
Gravell said the next step in being reimbursed for recovery coming out of the county’s pocket is waiting on President Biden’s desk.
He said the President must sign the county’s disaster declaration that would allow for most of its recovery costs to be reimbursed and grant low-interest loans to homeowners affected by the ice storm.