FERRY CO. Wash. – Almost one year ago, more than 40 roads in Ferry County were damaged by high water, landslides, mudslides and excessive moisture.
Ferry County Public Works officials said they are doing their best, but have struggled to fund the repairs to the roads needed.
Deadman Creek Road, which completely washed out in a section last year, is still significantly damaged and only has one lane open.
Will Rowton, the maintenance coordinator for Ferry County, said they have applied for FEMA funding to help pay for the road repairs, but have not been successful so far.
“We keep giving them information but we haven’t gotten anything back,” he said. “It seems like every time we give them information, they wait about a month, then ask for something else.”
He said people in Ferry County impacted by the roads have been frustrated.
“They’re having a lot of frustration and we are as well,” he explained. “We don’t even have good answers to give people.”
Rowton said they have had to do the best they can with the money available to them in the county, but it has not been enough to deal with the excessive damage from last year.
He said they have spent $600,000 on the roads in the county after last year’s mess, and $140,000 on Deadman Creek Road alone to fix the one lane.
“I guess when you compare it to hurricane damage, it seems really minor to FEMA, but our county and our families pay taxes too,” he said. “It feels like the runaround. It’s a really bad situation.”
FEMA spokesperson, Peter Sessum, confirmed Deadman Creek Road was included in a disaster declaration last year.
“Since it was part of an add on county, it might not be moving as swiftly as other projects,” he wrote in an email.
Sessum directed KREM 2 to speak with the Washington State Emergency Management Division. KREM 2 reached out for comment Thursday but we have not heard back.