published Wednesday, July 6th, 2011

Dayton to seek federal, state aid with storm cleanup costs

By Tom Davis/Correspondent
A modular home along state Highway 30 in Rhea County was destroyed as what authorities believe were two tornados passed through the New Harmony community on the Bledsoe/Rhea county line.
Staff Photo by Ben Benton/Chattanooga Times Free Press
A modular home along state Highway 30 in Rhea County was destroyed as what authorities believe were two tornados passed through the New Harmony community on the Bledsoe/Rhea county line. Staff Photo by Ben Benton/Chattanooga Times Free Press
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DAYTON, Tenn. — Dayton will apply for state and federal funds to offset cleanup costs resulting from the April 27 tornadoes, City Manager Frank Welch told councilmen Tuesday.

Welch said the city incurred about $325,000 in storm-related costs, primarily to its electricity distribution system.

“We have good records and feel like we have a chance to recover some of the costs,” he said.

He said the city administration will submit requests to the federal and Tennessee Emergency Management agencies. If the applications are accepted, FEMA would reimburse the city 75 percent of the total loss and TEMA would cover 12.5 percent.

In other matters, councilmen approved requests from MainStreet Dayton to reorient parking spaces adjacent to the Clyde W. Roddy Public Library when it seal-coats the parking lot. The change will improve traffic flow, MainStreet spokesman Kerry Nabors said. The council also agreed to assist MainStreet in repairing a parking lot adjacent to Rotary Centennial Park as part of the MainStreet downtown improvement project.

During an earlier meeting as the Dayton City School Board, board Chairman Bob Vincent said he would pay for advertisements he authorized to secure applications for director of schools. He said his action was an effort to put to rest controversy stemming from the ads.

“Upon strong advisement of my lawyers I was told I should not pay the invoices and I was acting in the role as school board chairman,” Vincent said. “I feel this has become a political item if not a personal thing. My desire is to protect Dayton City School and myself from undue process. I apologize to the community and will continue to promote and support the faculty, students and employees of DCS. I hope this concludes this matter and we can move on to more serious issues.”

Board member Steve Randolph responded, “I take exception with the comment that this was personal. If my brother were sitting there, I would do the same thing. We are only trying to protect the school system.”

“You’ve got your opinion and I’ve got mine,” Vincent said.

Tom Davis is based in Dayton and can be contacted at tsdavis@volstate.net.

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