On July 14, President Biden approved Governor Scott’s request for a major disaster declaration for Vermont to assist in recovery from a historic flood event of July 7-12, 2023. In the coming days and weeks, FEMA will be performing a Preliminary Damage Assessment (PDA) to determine the State and County level of Public Assistance (PA) and Individual Assistance (IA). See the Damage Assessment Quick Guide attached for more information on the PDA process.
The determination depends, in part, on the level and extent of impact and damage sustained by the community. Residents and Businesses that have been impacted and incurred damage are asked to report to the State to assist in this effort through a resident or business form that can be found here: https://vermont211.org/ . Your reporting is encouraged as it will aid in the disaster assessment and FEMA application process.
The Town of Andover participates in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) which means that certain regulations must be followed after a flooding event in order to benefit from the FEMA assistance programs. Towns will be working directly with the Regional Planning Commissions, State and FEMA in conducting PDAs and determining needed Public Assistance for emergency storm and recovery repairs to public infrastructure.
The Individual Assistance program helps individuals impacted by the disaster seek reimbursement for necessary expenses and needs that cannot be met through insurance or other forms of assistance. Available funding for our county under the Individual Assistance Program is pending a Formal Damage Assessment. Counties included under this declaration will be determined following the PDA. While assessments are underway, Individual/Residents, including those underinsured or noninsured, can begin to prepare for an application for Individual Assistance to cover uncovered expenses or unmet needs after insurance settlements.
Preparing and Applying for Individual Assistance:
First: Be sure to file a claim with your existing insurance provider(s) as soon as possible (flood, homeowners, renters, auto). Those with National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) policies can obtain guidance here. You do not have to file your claim prior to applying for FEMA disaster assistance, but you will be required to provide FEMA your insurance settlement or denial before being considered for certain types of assistance.
Important: Before You Begin Repairs all property owners should check with local building officials to determine which permits for repairs are required before beginning the work. Communities that participate in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) require town officials make Substantial Damage Determinations per local floodplain-management ordinances. Substantial Damage, as defined by FEMA, applies to a structure in a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) for which the total cost of repairs is 50 percent or more of the structure’s market value before the disaster occurred. If a building in a floodplain is determined by the local official to be substantially damaged, it must be brought into compliance with local floodplain management regulations, such as elevating a structure in a SFHA.
Please see HERE for a copy of road closures/Openings as of 6:00 p.m. this evening for Town of Chester roads only and does not include State Highways such as Route 11 and Route 103. The Town cannot provide a status on State Highways as their status is affected by multiple towns. Please note that many roads are labeled as passable, but are often only 1 lane.
If you do not need to be on these roads, please stay off them. For those who are being patient, we greatly appreciate it. Chester has 102 miles of road with 97 of those miles dirt road. ALL roads within town limits have been impacted in some way. It takes significant time to assess these roads to a level necessary to announce their status. All crews are working very hard to open these roads as quickly as possible.
We will try to announce when roads begin to open. However, if you have questions regarding a road status, please call town hall at 875-2173. We are not regularly monitoring Facebook questions or comments.
Thank you all again for your patience and consideration of the time that it will take to rebuild the infrastructure of our town. Julie Hance, Town Manager