After visiting Fairbanks today to meet with residents and local leaders about recovery efforts required as a result of a recent storm system, Governor Sean Parnell today declared a state disaster for Interior Alaska. Specifically, the governor amended his disaster declaration for the western Alaska villages to include the Fairbanks North Star Borough for state-supported recovery programs.
"I commend residents for taking care of their neighbors and helping those who were hardest hit by the storm," Governor Parnell said.
The same storm systems that devastated western Alaska villages went on to cause widespread damage in Interior Alaska. All told, the four storms that moved through the region blew down trees, cutting power to as many as 16,000 residents at the height of the storm.
"All of our state assets have been standing by to assist the borough, and we have maintained communication through the state emergency operations center during the event," Governor Parnell continued. "The purpose of this disaster declaration is to ensure the borough has access to recovery grants in order to speed up the process."
Golden Valley Electric Association has coordinated with all available linemen from across the state to repair downed power lines as quickly as possible. Crews have been working around the clock since the storm subsided this weekend.
Residents impacted by the storm will be asked to work with the borough and state damage assessment teams to determine eligible costs for reimbursement.