7/8/2018 5:40:00 PM Preliminary city damage estimate given
Photo of Island Park entrance at 7:00 a.m. Monday morning, water barely coming over road now
At Sunday afternoon's emergency meeting of the Windom city council, Mayor Dominic Jones gave the preliminary estimate of damage to public infrastructure in the city.
Jones stated that the city went through various FEMA forms to determine the estimate, which included roughly $1.48 million in damage to city infrastructure and $150,000 in emergency response equipment and staffing.
The damage assessment includes things like turf restoration, playground equipment, fencing, bathrooms and possible damage to the city swimming pool.
Jones stated that, as of 5 p.m. Sunday, the river level had dropped to 23.12 feet, down from a crest of 23.36 feet. He added that it will take several days for the water to come down, and that additional rainfall could potentially cause the river level to rise again.
Emeergency Manager Paul Johnson stated that the incident management team had been demobilized, but could return to Windom if needed.
Jones and Johnson both stated that the city likely will be eligible for federal and state emergency repair funding, but that it was uncertain if private homeowners or businesses would be eligible for federal or state funding. However, both stressed that any homeowner or business owner that had damage during the flooding should take pictures and document any and all damages and submit forms that are available on the city website.
Johnson stated that the forms filled out by the public would be needed if homeowners become eligible for flood assistance funding. However, the forms are also used by emergency management to determine future planning in the event of flooding in the future.
Fire Chief Dan Ortmann stated that dikes that have been put up in the community have been holding up as planned. He stressed that sand bags should remain in place until further notice and would like to see the river return below flood stage before sand bags are removed from property.
Johnson stressed that Island Park and Mayflower Park are closed to both vehicle and foot traffic, stating that there may be exposed utilities in the parks that could cause electrocution.
Johnson added that there are still a handful of county and township roads that are closed due to flooding -- most notably County Road 5 south of Highway 62. He added that there has been some erosion along Perkins Creek, which could potentially expose some utility lines.
Council member Rod Byam added that Red Cross clean-up kits are available free of charge at the BARC. He added that home owners should keep building materials like sheetrock separate from other trash or things like damaged furniture or carpet.
The next council briefing on the flooding will be at 10 a.m. Monday during the meeting with Gov. Mark Dayton. Another briefing will be held at 5 p.m. Monday at City Hall.
Note: as of 8 a.m. Monday morning the level was at 22.82 ft.