Alabamians to help decide how to use multi-million dollar storm relief fund

      Alabama citizens{}are learning{}Tuesday about how{}more than $49 million dollars in pending federal disaster relief funds can{}be{}used in areas that suffered damage in the April 2011 tornado outbreak.

      The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs{}is holding a public meeting at the Cullman City Hall. ADECA administrators say, in order to be eligible, the projects must meet three areas of qualifications: housing, infrastructure and economic development.{}Applicants must prove that all{}projects must have been affected by the 2011 tornado outbreak.

      This is the second round of federal funding. A few months ago, ADECA received more than $24 million that had to mainly target hard-hit areas, including Jefferson, Tuscaloosa, Dekalb and Marion counties.{}ADECA{}administrators say, so far in this second round, the Department of Housing and Urban Development hasn't given them official target areas and how much of the{}money must be spent there. ADECA expects to receive HUD rules in two weeks. Once they do, they will have 90 days to write and submit an action plan.

      ADECA would like the public to submit projects to be included in that plan. Once HUD receives the action plan and signs off on it, Alabama will have to award the money within two-year timeline.

      Stay with ABC 33/40 for this developing report.