MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — As much as $10 million in federal grant money is available to help land owners in 14 counties who lost trees during Hurricane Michael in 2018 and tornadoes that hit east Alabama the following year.
The Alabama Forestry Commission said private, non-industrial timber owners can qualify for the money, which comes from the Agriculture Department's Farm Service Agency. Grants are available for people with timber in Barbour, Bullock, Coffee, Covington, Crenshaw, Dale, Escambia, Geneva, Henry, Houston, Lee, Montgomery, Pike and Russell counties.
Michael, a Category 5 monster, toppled and splintered thousands of trees when it made landfall on the Florida Panhandle with winds that topped 160 mph (257.50 kph) and caused extensive damage in southeast Alabama in October 2018. Trees are still down in some areas.
An EF-4 tornado with winds estimated at 170 mph (274 kph) struck Lee County on March 3, 2019, killing 23 people and damaging trees and structures along a path nearly 27 miles (43 kilometers) long.