Sipsey, Argo forming long-term recovery plan
by James Phillips
Aug 29, 2011 | 2656 views | 0 0 comments | 11 11 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Disaster recovery officials and residents of Sipsey and Argo met last week to discuss long-term recovery for the communitys. - Photo by: James Phillips
Disaster recovery officials and residents of Sipsey and Argo met last week to discuss long-term recovery for the communitys. - Photo by: James Phillips
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SIPSEY -- Community members from Sipsey and Argo are moving forward with a plan for long-term recovery from April's tornadoes that devastated both areas in east Walker County.

Officials with federal, state and local disaster recovery agencies met with residents from both communities last week at the Sipsey Community Center in the first step in forming that long-term plan.

"You are the eyes and ears in of Argo and Sipsey," said Paul Kennedy, chairman of the Walker County Long Term Recovery Committee. "We need you guys to find out the wants and needs of your communities. It can be a wish list for Argo and Sipsey."

Pete Gozza, a representative from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, said the long-term efforts in Sipsey and Argo will be much different that the long-term needs in Cordova.

"We've been working on this for some time already in Cordova, but it is slightly different here because the impact here is mostly residential," Gozza said. "We need community members to identify any problems and let us hear them. We can't help if we don't know what the problem is."

Residents from Sipsey and Argo at last week's meeting decided to move forward with long-term recovery as a joint effort.

"Since Argo doesn't have a municipal government, I think it is wise for these communities to work together," Kennedy sad. "This is an opportunity for people in these communities to work together and show what they want Argo and Sipsey to be like in 10 years."

Melissa Pearson, a representative from the Town of Sipsey, said a public forum regarding the long-term plan will be scheduled by the Sipsey Town Council on Sept. 13.

"We're not sure what the date will be, but we'll get together with everyone involved and set the date at the next council meeting on Sept. 13," she said.

Officials said the long-term recovery meeting will take place at the Sipsey Community Center and citizens from Sipsey and Argo will be invited to attend.