AT&T has contributed $25,000 to the Portage Health Foundation to support ongoing flood relief efforts benefiting those affected by this summer’s catastrophic flooding in Houghton County.
AT&T’s charitable foundation contributed $21,000 to the relief effort with the additional $4,000 coming from the AT&T Pioneers—a volunteer network of AT&T employees and retirees committed to doing good in their communities.
On Father’s Day weekend, torrential rains washed out much of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and parts of Wisconsin. In the span of just a few short hours, the storm produced 7 inches rain, resulting in flash flooding that claimed the lives of three individuals, caused over 60 sinkholes, and destroyed property and roadways throughout much of the Keweenaw Peninsula and surrounding area.
Governor Snyder would go on to declare a state of emergency for Houghton and Menominee counties, calling on the National Guard to assist in the immediate recovery efforts.
“The flooding we experienced absolutely devasted this community—homes, streets, whole neighborhoods were seemingly washed away in just a matter of hours,” said Kevin Store, Executive Director of the Portage Health Foundation. “It’s been a long climb back for many of us here in Houghton County, but generous gifts like this one from AT&T and its amazing employees have made the process much easier.”
All told, public agencies in Gogebic, Houghton and Menominee counties sustained almost $30 million in damage from the flooding.
The state initially agreed to cover half of the costs necessary to qualify for federal match funds to address the damage, however, governor Snyder has since announced the state will spend $7.4 million to assist in the relief effort, covering the full 25 percent local agencies must match to draw funding from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
“The Father’s Day Flood was a once-in-a-lifetime event for Houghton County, and the local and state response has been absolutely amazing,” said State Representative Scott Dianda. “The support we’ve received from community members like AT&T and their thousands of amazing employees has been truly touching and has played a critical role in helping this community rebuild. I can’t begin to thank them enough for supporting us so generously.”
“The flooding this summer took an incredible toll on Houghton County,” said David Lewis, President of AT&T Michigan. “We’re more than happy to do our part to see that this community comes back even stronger than before, and I’m so proud of all our amazing employees who stepped up to support this important relief effort.”