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Hurricane Florence cost Leland over $2 million, debris removal tops $1.5 million

Hurricane Florence cost the Town of Leland over $2 million, with the biggest expense being debris monitoring and removal.

Hurricane Florence cost the Town of Leland over $2 million, most of which includes debris-related expenses. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Town of Leland)
Hurricane Florence cost the Town of Leland over $2 million, most of which includes debris-related expenses. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Town of Leland)

LELAND — Hurricane Florence cost the Town of Leland over $2 million, with debris-related costs making up 76 percent of that figure.

At the town’s Council meeting Thursday, Council will vote to approve transferring $1.2 million out of its general fund to cover hurricane-related expenses.

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Final invoices for debris removal services have come in, spurring the need to pull money out of Leland’s general fund. Debris monitoring and removal will cost Leland $1,596,162.82.

As of Feb. 11, according to a hurricane update agenda item, Leland’s hurricane-related expenses total $2,097,748.98. Additional projects and expenses are still pending, the item states.

The $1.2 million general fund transfer will use approximately $1.15 million to cover debris costs, according to Carly Hagg, the town’s finance director. The remaining amount will be used as “a little buffer for some things coming in,” Hagg said at Leland’s agenda briefing Monday.

Some of those anticipated expenses include work on the Leland Recreation Center.

Since Florence hit in September, Leland has been reimbursed $125,428.04 in insurance proceeds for hurricane-related expenses. This includes $97,727.08 in general fund expenses and $27,700.96 for costs to the town’s utilities and cultural arts center.

Other updates

One month after the hurricane, Leland estimated it would cost less than $10,000 to address wastewater treatment damages.

No road damage as a result of the storm has been identified as of this month’s update. Damage to street signs is being studied by a town-contracted engineer. That report is expected this month.

To address flooding concerns, Leland asked for the state’s help in November to conduct a flood study of the Town Creek basin. As of Feb. 11, Leland has not heard back, the hurricane update states.

The town is still working with its Federal Emergency Management Agency representative to submit reimbursement documentation.


Send tips and comments to Johanna Ferebee at johanna@localvoicemedia.com

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