The State also requested, with support from the congressional delegation, a federal disaster declaration for Chittenden, Grand Isle, Lamoille, Orange and Orleans counties, opening the door for federal recovery assistance. The $1.153 million in FEMA funding will support the Town of Colchester as it undertakes more substantial and permanent repairs to the causeway and path. The work is scheduled for the fall of 2019, to avoid path closures during the high-use summer months.
In a joint statement, Leahy, Sanders and Welch said: “This storm caused significant damage in several Vermont counties – damage that was beyond the ability of many of our towns to recover from. That’s why we have a federal disaster recovery program, and we are pleased FEMA recognized the need for federal funding to help restore this popular recreation area as well as other infrastructure damaged in the May storm.”
Aaron Frank, Colchester Town Manager said: “The Town of Colchester is incredibly thankful to our federal partners, including Senator Leahy, Senator Sanders and Representative Welch, for providing funding to reconstruct the Causeway to its condition prior to the May 4-5, 2018 high water and severe windstorm. We are also thankful for the State of Vermont, for providing interim, emergency repairs and providing a 17.5 percent match of the restoration and mitigation funding, leaving the Town with 7.5 percent of the financial responsibility. Colchester is proud to be the steward of one of the finest sections of bike path in the world.”