Rauner visits FEMA investigators in Fox Lake flood areas

  • Karen Burt walks along Kings Road from her home during flooding in Fox Lake in July. Gov. Bruce Rauner toured Fox Lake on Friday to get a firsthand assessment of damage caused by the flooding.

      Karen Burt walks along Kings Road from her home during flooding in Fox Lake in July. Gov. Bruce Rauner toured Fox Lake on Friday to get a firsthand assessment of damage caused by the flooding. Gilbert R. Boucher II | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 8/18/2017 5:18 PM

Gov. Bruce Rauner met with federal and state officials Friday in Fox Lake to get a quick, firsthand assessment on the flood damage that crippled the Chain O' Lakes area last month.

On the same day, investigators with the Federal Emergency Management Agency began working with state and local officials on a formal flood damage assessment for the region, Fox Lake Mayor Donny Schmit said.

 

FEMA officers will go door-to-door through the weekend to detail flood damage after heavy rains caused the Chain O' Lakes to crest about 4 feet over normal summer levels, Schmit said.

"This is the first time he (Rauner) stopped in Fox Lake on this flood incident," Schmit said, adding Rauner was in the village for about 10 minutes. "We appreciate all the support we have been receiving from the county and state. But it's unclear if we will hit the threshold we need to get federal assistance."

Rauner's visit came after he asked FEMA to join state officials in conducting flood damage assessments in parts of Lake, McHenry, Kane and Cook counties, his office announced Thursday.

The request was submitted after initial damage assessments conducted by county officials documented nearly 300 houses suffered major damage or were destroyed, and more than 3,000 others were affected by floodwaters.

Personnel from FEMA, the Illinois Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Small Business Administration and local emergency management agencies are traveling through flooded communities to assess damage to houses and businesses.

IEMA also is working with municipalities, counties and other governments to document their flood-related costs. That will help determine whether the state can meet the $18.3 million threshold to obtain federal assistance and receive reimbursement for flood-related expenses.

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