ROXBURY — The state of Vermont is still trying to get the Federal Emergency Management Agency to help pay for repairs to the fish hatchery in Roxbury, the state’s largest remaining repair project following flooding from 2011’s Tropical Storm Irene.
At issue is whether FEMA should help pay for a replacement hatchery that meets federal clean water standards.
When Irene hit the state’s oldest fish hatchery, dating to 1891, it swept 90,000 fish downstream and filled its outdoor ponds with gravel and silt.
But the state can’t restore the hatchery to its pre-flood condition because it would be out of compliance with federal water quality laws.
A replacement hatchery that meets clean water standards would cost nearly $4.5 million. The state asked FEMA to pick up 90 percent of the cost.
FEMA argues Irene didn’t cause the hatchery to go out of compliance, so it’s not the agency’s responsibility to help fix it.
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