Wicker, Cochran, Kelly Announce $2.1 Million For FEMA Safe Room At Tupelo H.S.

FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grant Will Support Multi-Purpose Safe Room Construction

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Roger Wicker, R-Miss., Thad Cochran, R-Miss., and U.S. Representative Trent Kelly, R-Miss., today announced a $2.1 million grant to help construct a large multi-purpose safe room at Tupelo High School.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Hazard Mitigation grant was awarded to the City of Tupelo. It will be used to help the city build a 12,707-square-foot multi-use room to protect almost 2,200 students, staff, and visitors from wind speeds up to 250 mph.

“Although extreme weather events are unpredictable, the damage they can wreak is well-known to Mississippians,” Wicker said. “I am encouraged to see that the City of Tupelo and FEMA continue their efforts to shield students, faculty, staff, and other community members from the worst Mother Nature has to offer.”

“Tupelo has been diligent in investing in safe rooms to protect its residents. The new safe room at the high school is another example of preparing now for severe weather in order to save lives,” said Cochran, who serves on the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee with funding jurisdiction over FEMA.

“Tupelo residents have seen firsthand how severe weather impacts lives and property,” Kelly said. “The safe room will offer comfort to families whose loved ones will be protected.”

The $2.1 million award includes an $89,498 design work grant issued by FEMA in March 2015. The total federal share of the project, $2,125,089, represents 75 percent of the total eligible cost of $2,833,452. In addition to meeting matching fund requirements, the city will pay for other non-eligible amenities. The estimated total project cost is $6.1 million.

In September 2015, the Mississippi lawmakers announced FEMA grants to support construction at Lee Acres and Theron Nichols Park in Tupelo.