U.S. Senator Robert C. Byrd, D-W.Va., today applauded the Obama Administration's swift approval of the State of West Virginia's request for a major federal disaster declaration as a result of the recent severe flooding in Southern West Virginia. Approval of the disaster declaration request will now enable federal funding to be released to the impacted areas to assist clean-up efforts. The June 12, 2010 severe storms with heavy and wind-driven rains caused significant flooding, mudslides and landslides in Southern West Virginia. Many public and private properties were damaged as a result.
Byrd joined West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin in writing letters to President Obama and Patricia Arcuri, the Acting Regional Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Region III, requesting the disaster declaration.
The declaration announced today covers assistance to individuals and households, as well as State and local governments and certain non-profit organizations for emergency work and repair or replacement of disaster-damaged facilities in the following counties: Logan, McDowell, Mingo, and Wyoming Counties
Byrd, who is Chairman of the Senate Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee, which has budgetary jurisdiction over the Federal Emergency Management Agency, welcomed the response from the Obama Administration noting that, "I applaud the Obama Administration's swift response to West Virginia's request for this disaster declaration. West Virginia has sustained multiple federal disasters within the past several months. Many of the victims of this most recent tragedy were still recovering from prior severe weather events. This Federal assistance is justified, and I am hopeful that the impacted individuals will begin to apply for assistance as soon as possible as they work to restore their homes and their livelihoods."
According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Individual Assistance can include temporary housing assistance for eligible applicants such as rental assistance and repair assistance. Constituents in Logan, McDowell, Mingo, and Wyoming Counties should be encouraged to register with FEMA by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362), TTY (800) 462-7585 for individuals with speech or hearing disabilities. For those with Internet access, they may apply for disaster assistance online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov.