No Money From Feds For Storm Shelters In OKC - News9.com - Oklahoma City, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports |

No Money From Feds For Storm Shelters In OKC

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OKLAHOMA CITY -

Bad news for hundreds of Oklahomans hoping for storm shelter rebates. They're being told no. That's because the state did not receive enough funding from the federal government to pay for them.

At the beginning of the year, 500 homeowner's names were pulled out of a hat. They were told they would be first in line to receive federal grant money to help pay for storm shelters to be installed in their homes. The city found out Friday, that would not the case.

12/11/2011 Related Story: OKC Launches Rebate Program For Safe Rooms

"Oklahoma City was disappointed to learn we aren't going to be reimbursed for the storm shelter reimbursement program," city spokesperson, Kristy Yager said.

Flat Safe Tornado Shelters is disappointed too. They've got a long list of families waiting to receive word from Oklahoma emergency management agencies and the federal government to go ahead and install shelters and get partial reimbursement to help keep their family safe.

So what happened?

"Oklahoma City didn't see disasters last year that would allow those grants to come here it's a good and bad problem," Yager said.

A letter came to the city explaining that Oklahoma did not see enough presidential disaster declarations to qualify for funds from the federal government for its storm shelter program.

The letter says eight other communities in Oklahoma received similar letters.

"There's not a lot we can do about it at this point," Yager said.

Flat Safe Tornado says it's a shame for families wanting peace of mind but don't have enough money.

"It would be highly beneficial and highly proactive living in tornado alley, living in Oklahoma to be able to provide these to those individual homes," Flat Safe Tornado Shelter, Lisa Ingram said.

"I know peace of mind is what a lot of people want whether we had a severe weather outbreak season or not," she said.

"Very disappointed obviously because we want as many citizens to have shelters as possible so this is a little set back, so we're hoping next year we can get the funds but we really don't want the tornados that would get us there, so it's a good and bad problem," Yager said.

The city says hold onto those vouchers for now and if we get more tornados next year, those families may qualify. The city says no one should be out of money because it asked those 500 people to wait to get the shelters until it had the money.

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