Newswatch 16 has learned from the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency that the amount of money spent in nine counties on snow removal during last month's blizzard fell far short of its threshold needed to be eligible for reimbursement.
Communities, school districts, and universities in nine counties were eligible to collect up to 75 percent of what they spent on snow removal in the two days following the blizzard, but the numbers did not work.
Those nine counties and state agencies like PennDOT needed to spend a total of $18.2 million on snow removal after the blizzard. The total spent, however, was only $11.5 million, less than two thirds the amount of money needed to qualify under federal rules, which means these counties will not get any federal reimbursement.
On Wednesday, Lackawanna County commissioners plan to take up the issue at the group's afternoon meeting.
Commission chairman Pat O'Malley tells Newswatch 16 the commissioners will ask Pennsylvania's U.S. senators and congressmen to try to find the money to help the nine counties in northeastern and central Pennsylvania to find another way to get paid back for at least some of the costs for that costly blizzard.