Kerry, Brown, MA Congressional Delegation Secure Help From President Obama On Second Storm
Senators John Kerry and Scott Brown, together with Congressmen Ed Markey, Barney Frank, William Delahunt, Jim McGovern, Niki Tsongas, John Olver, Richard Neal, John Tierney, Michael Capuano and Stephen Lynch today announced that President Barack Obama has amended his original disaster declaration to include the second storm. Such a designation means that the state is eligible to receive assistance for state and local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations for emergency work and the repair or replacement of disaster-damaged facilities, including direct Federal assistance.
Two back-to-back storms pummeled the state in late March. The floodwaters caused severe damage to homes, businesses and public facilities throughout the state.
Kerry, Brown and the entire Massachusetts delegation wrote to the President earlier this month urging him to quickly approve the second disaster designation request.
"The President came through for Massachusetts and he did it swiftly. He understands the pounding we took from the flooding and he amended his original declaration to keep the spigot open for assistance after the second storm packed a wallop. I've seen the flood damage up close and I've met with businesses on the brink. I've been on the phone with Mayors who are still screaming for help. So, believe me, it matters that the President acted so quickly on the request from all of us and from the Governor," said Senator John Kerry.
"I am pleased the president acted quickly in declaring this second disaster declaration so that Massachusetts families, communities and businesses will continue receiving much-needed federal resources during the recovery process," said Senator Scott Brown.
"Following back-to-back devastating storms, this critical declaration is needed now more than ever" said Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass). "I commend the Obama Administration for taking swift action to help get assistance to those who need it most."
"This is important news," Rep. McGovern said. "Southeastern Massachusetts was severely damaged by the second storm -- I've seen first-hand what happened in communities like Attleboro, Fall River Rehoboth and others. I commend the President for this step, and I will continue to work with local communities to make sure they get the help they need."
"I am grateful for the Administration's quick response to our request for an amended disaster declaration so that communities affected by the torrential rain both this month and last can qualify for federal assistance," said Congresswoman Niki Tsongas. "In visiting with homeowners and businesses in Fifth District last week, I know that the need for assistance is still great and that this declaration by the President will be welcome news."
"I am pleased that President Obama has promptly answered our call for additional disaster assistance which will facilitate the repair and rebuilding of our communities," said Congressman John F. Tierney (MA-06). "In this difficult economic climate, this relief is even more meaningful and timely. We were glad to work with the Governor in facilitating the President's prompt attention to this request and we are grateful for the President's responsiveness."
"I am pleased that the President is responding to the legitimate needs of the people and communities of Massachusetts that were hit so hard by the storm. Federal help is essential as people work hard to recover from this disaster," Congressman Barney Frank.
"Massachusetts withstood two "100-year' storms in less than a month and the heavy rains and subsequent flooding caused widespread damage in communities throughout the state," Congressman Stephen F. Lynch said. "I thank President Obama for amending the disaster declaration to include the second storm. This will greatly assist communities in the clean-up and rebuilding efforts for homes and businesses."
"The flood damage that was done to homes and businesses in Massachusetts due to the record amount of rainfall in March was severe. I personally surveyed damage to property in communities in both Hampden and Worcester Counties. The announcement by President Obama will significantly help recovery efforts and provide needed relief to those families and businesses adversely affected by the storms," said Congressman Richard E. Neal.