St. Marys Press Release

Hurricane Irma Update

St. Marys, GA - September 23, 2017- Here are updates for City residents, and we recommend that you check the County website www.camdencountyga.gov in addition to the City’s website www.stmarysga.gov.

Safety

We ask all residents to stay safe. The Coast Guard and City began cleanup efforts at the Riverfront starting Friday, September 22, 2017.  Safety zones will be set up around the work areas to ensure the safety of workers and our citizens. 

Effective immediately, the Coast Guard and its contractors will be recovering vessels along the St. Marys waterfront.  There will be divers, boats and equipment in the water.  Mariners are requested to keep back 50 yards and to transit this area with extreme caution.  For more information, please contact the Coast Guard at (904) 714-7557.    

St. Marys Street from Market on the Square, east to Ready Street and Ready Street, from St. Marys Street to Stable Alley is closed for a period of at least 30 days and the need for this closure will be reviewed the week of October 15th based on existing conditions at that time.  This closure is necessary in order to support the removal of debris and boats from the St. Marys waterfront. 

Maritime/Boating Notice

The Department of Natural Resources has inspected the Meeting Street Boat Ramp and has deemed it open for public use. All marine facilities along the St. Marys River, in the City of St. Marys, are closed for public use. Please continue to be mindful in St. Marys’ waterways for hazards such as floating and submerged debris.

Please follow this link on our webpage for all information related to the Hurricane Irma Emergency Order Information along with the Guidance Document from our Department.  DNR regulations can be found on the following websites:

http://coastalgadnr.org/HurricaneIrma 

http://coastalgadnr.org/sites/default/files/crd/MarshandShore/PermitsandApplications/Hurricane%20Irma%20Guidance%20Document%209.14.17.pdf

Georgia Department of Natural Resources Coastal Resources Division (GA DNR/CRD) recognizes the need for local communities and residents to begin the process of returning to life as we know it. In response, we have activated a call center that started on Monday, September 18, 2017 to gather information about impacts to beach front property, private docks, bank stabilizations, marinas, commercial docks, or other structures within coastal waters, marshlands, or along barrier island beaches. Staff will also be available to answer questions about permitting/regulatory processes and needs for areas impacted within the jurisdiction of the State’s Shore Protection Act (SPA) and/or Coastal Marshlands Protection Act (CMPA). The call center number is (912) 264-7218 and will operate between the hours of 8 AM and 4:30 PM until further notice.  

Downtown Docking Facilities

The City is working on plans to restore its downtown public docking and boating facilities.  This will be a two phase process, with temporary improvements to allow some boating activity and a full restoration and betterment project to provide long term facilities. We will continue to update all citizens on the status of this work and anticipate starting with temporary repairs and stabilization of the Gilman Boat House Dock and berthing facilities. 

 The Department of Natural Resources has authorized the City, through its emergency powers to issue contracts for cleanup along the St. Marys Riverfront.  The City has awarded a contract and is moving forward with cleanup effort.

City Work Efforts

The City has contracted with Goodwyn, Mills and Caywood, Inc. (GMC) to assist with FEMA contracting and documentation.  City staff, along with GMC continues to assess damages to maritime facilities and all other public owned facilities in the City. The City is working with GA DNR, Federal Park Service, and the Coast Guard in a cooperative effort.

We appreciate everyone’s patience as we work on storm debris removal throughout the City with City staff and Advance Disposal.  Each day we are seeing improvement, but it will take some time to bring all our roads and walkways to their pre-storm levels. 

Trash and Vegetative Waste

The City of St. Marys is on a normal trash collection schedule. The City will be doing special collection of vegetative waste only from the right of way. Vegetative brush will include storm brush debris, but no construction debris at this time. City Residents can also take vegetative debris to the property located behind the airport on Douglas Drive. City staff will be present. Drop off times are 8am to 6pm, Monday-Saturday.  The drop off site will be closed on Sundays. Residents will be required to provide name and local address prior to leaving debris. This site is not available to contractors or landscapers as per GEMA/FEMA regulations. Contractors must go to the County yard waste site.

 The County yard waste site is located at 4884 Old Still Road in Kingsland and will be open Monday-Saturday from 7am to 5pm and on Sunday from 7am to 3pm.  The City is reviewing the contract regarding pickup of construction debris and will provide an update regarding this possible pickup at a later date.  

 Damage Assessments

Camden County, including the City of St. Marys, is now part of a federally declared disaster and residents are eligible for assistance. The online registration process will take 18-20 minutes.

Visit https://www.disasterassistance.gov to begin applying for FEMA Federal Emergency Management Agency Individual Assistance.

 If you need further information or assistance:

Call the FEMA Helpline at 1-800-621-FEMA (1-800-621-3362). This number is also for users of 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS). TTY users can call 1-800-462-7585. Helpline services are available seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. ET.

 The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) opened a Disaster Recovery Center on Friday, September 22, 2017, at the Camden County Public Service Authority (PSA) Recreation Center. This center offers in-person support to individuals and businesses. Recovery specialists from FEMA, U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), the State of Georgia, and other agencies will be at the center to discuss assistance and to help anyone who needs guidance in filing an application. The center’s address is:

Camden County Public Service Authority (PSA) Recreation Center 
1050 Wildcat Drive
Kingsland, Georgia 31548

Hours:              Monday - Friday          8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Saturday                      8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Sunday                        1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

City Utility Bill Due Date

There will be a 5 working day grace period for payment of water and sewer bills, which will be due September 27, 2017.

Volunteers

Citizens who are interested in volunteering or in need of assistance as a result of Irma may call 912-464-2209. This phone is manned by volunteers and has an answering machine. Someone will get back to you as soon as possible if you leave a message. You may also use email address st.marysirmarecoveryhotline@tds.net. The hotline service cannot provide medical assistance but may be able to get your transportation to a medical appointment. If you are elderly or disabled, they may be able to help remove fallen trees from your property or clean up your lawn or driveway of debris. The hotline is to link those individuals with neighbors who are willing to help. They have no money to disperse but there is volunteer assistance for non-monetary help.