Emergency Appropriation Serves as 'Fail Safe' For Howell

Money to be to cover Hurricane Sandy expenses

At their last meeting the council discussed a $2 emergency appropriation to help cover the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy even as the township continues to cleanup the brush and debris from the powerful storm.

Since that time FEMA has announced the township will receive $1.3 million in grant money to help defray those costs. 

Tuesday night when they adopted a resolution for the appropriation the members of the council said the goal was to only use the money to pay the township's cost until the money from the federal governtment arrived. 

Mayor Robert Walsh said the resolution was "giving permission if we need this money to pay in the near term." The mayor, in his last regular meeting at the head of the dais, said that if township spent $1.7 million they would only need to bond for $400 thousand rather than the full $2 million that would be available to them. 

Township Chief Financial Officer Jeff Filliatreault said if the township opted to go that route they could spread repaying the bond over five years with smaller notes. He also said it could be possible to find that amount in next year's budget eliminating the need to bond. 

Mayor Walsh said the township is expecting the money from FEMA to arrive in the next few weeks, but until then the emergency appropriation provides "a fail safe so we can pay the contractors."

Deputy Mayor Bill Gotto also said that if the township goes above the money originally allocated by FEMA they can apply for more reimbursement in the future. 


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