MARTIN (March 28) – The Northwest Tennessee Development District is partnering with the Tennessee Valley Authority on a position to manage long-term disaster relief for Tennessee counties impacted by tornadoes in December 2021.
The district plans to hire a long-term recovery manager to coordinate ongoing disaster relief in six Tennessee counties that were most heavily impacted by the December 10, 2021, storms. All six counties that received disaster declarations – Dyer, Henry, Gibson, Lake, Obion, and Weakley – are in the development district.
The district has applied for a federal grant through the Economic Development Administration to fund the position for three years at a cost of $400,000. The grant requires an 80/20 match. TVA is donating the $80,000 to cover the matching funds.
“We realized we have to do something beyond short-term clean up,” said Melinda Goode, Executive Director of the NWTDD. ”This position will help avoid putting more financial burden on our counties that are still recovering.”
The development district will conduct a search to find suitable candidates and will oversee the position. Goode said the manager will help find additional resources for the counties like grants and public-private partnerships.
Along with the direct funding of this new position, TVA worked with local power companies in the impacted areas to provide direct relief, along with financial assistance.
”TVA is always ready to help the communities we serve,” said TVA’s President and CEO Jeff lyash. “Disaster recovery is not a short process. Funding this position is another way we can be there for our neighbors.”
Goode said the hiring process will begin once the federal funding is approved.