Alabama Congressional Delegation urges Obama to grant Bentley’s request for disaster assistance
Alabama’s Congressional Delegation today sent a letter to President Obama urging him to grant Gov. Robert Bentley’s request for a federal emergency declaration in the wake of severe storms across the state.
The State of Alabama is seeking federal funds to help the 19 Alabama counties that have reported damage due to the wave of severe weather that’s hit the state over the last two days. 200 state personnel are currently working on disaster response, and Gov. Bentley has activated the National Guard.
The governor is in Limestone and Jefferson counties today visiting areas of the state that were impacted by Monday’s tornado outbreak.
Up in Washington, Alabama’s delegation is seeking both financial and physical assistance for the state through the Stafford Disaster Relief Act, which was put in place in 1988 and created a system in which presidential disaster emergency declarations trigger federal financial assistance through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Under the act, FEMA assumes responsibility for coordinating relief efforts and is able to provide grants to the state to help mitigate costs. Gov. Bentley and the Congressional Delegation are asking the federal government to cover 100 percent of the disaster relief costs for the first 72 hours after the disaster. After 72 hours, the match is typically 75 percent federal, 25 percent state, though the federal government can decide to pay above 75 percent if they deem it necessary.
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