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City partners with firm to help with disaster recovery efforts

A Mandeville, La., company has been selected to serve as the city’s disaster recovery consultant.

The Board of Mayor and Aldermen Thursday authorized the city’s seven-member consultant selection committee to begin negotiations with Del Sol Consulting Inc. for disaster recovery services.

Mayor George Flaggs Jr. said the company will help city officials get reimbursement for disaster recovery work from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

“This something other cities are doing and benefitting from it; we’re late. We should have done this years ago,” he said.

“They will know what’s reimbursable under FEMA,” Flaggs said. “We don’t have the expertise to know what’s reimbursable or not. We don’t have anybody in house that can do that. We don’t know what’s eligible and not eligible.

“They can concentrate on it. Whatever money they get, they get a percentage of it.”

According to its website, Del Sol Consulting is a woman and minority-owned startup company specializing in providing consulting and staff augmentation services to clients for pre-planning, response and recovery from natural disasters. The company has been in business for 13 years.

The company’s employees began their careers in disaster recovery services with FEMA and other agencies dedicated to assisting communities, according to the website.

In another matter, the board approved a bid of $66,000 from Socrates Garrett Enterprises Inc. of Jackson to raze a dilapidated commercial building at 2400 Washington St.

The building was built about 1928 and occupied first by the Keith Williams Motor Company and in 1935 by the O’Neill Motor Company, which moved out of the building in 1937.

In 1939, the federal Works Progress Administration used the building for its lending department, and in the late 1940s and early 1950s, the building was the home of the Grego Buick Company and in 1954, the Abraham Buick Company.

Mississippi Hardware occupied the building in 1955 and stayed there until the company moved in the 1980s to the former M. Fine and Sons Manufacturing garment factory, which is the site for the proposed technology center.