Flooding

Highway 84 East had to be shut down, just east of Magnolia Road, in what is known as the Bogue Homa flats, after water flowed over all four lanes around noon Friday. Longtime residents can’t remember a time that has happened. 

The Jones County Board of Supervisors got an update from Emergency Management Agency Director Paul Sheffield about the ongoing efforts to identify and calculate the amount of damage caused by flash-flooding and the possibility of getting state and federal assistance.

“We should finish today or tomorrow,” Sheffield said at Monday morning’s meeting in Ellisville.

At least 129 residents had some damage associated with the storm, which brought about 1 foot of rain in a period of 12 hours three days after Christmas.

Damage assessments will have to total more than $250,000 for the county to get help from the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency, Sheffield said, and if the state’s amount of damage is over $4.4 million, the state could be in line for federal funds.

“I’m going to have over $300,000 just in storm damage,” Supervisor Barry Saul said. “I had to spend $100,000 last week just to open two major thoroughfares.”

Federal funds would pay for 75 percent of the costs and the state would pick up a portion of the rest, if the state gets assistance. Gov. Phil Bryant declared a State of Emergency for Jones, Jasper, Wayne, Covington, Forrest, Perry and Clarke counties.

Board President Jerome Wyatt said that all supervisors are doing what they can to restore roads and bridges as quickly as possible, without worrying about funding.

“These are things we can’t control, like weather,” he said. “We’ve got to do what we can to get the community back to normal, then we’ll find a way to get reimbursed.”

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