Texas: Governor Abbott Announces Additional Disaster Assistance Approved In Presidential Disaster Declaration For Severe Storms, Flooding

~ In a recent announcement, Governor Greg Abbott revealed that President Joe Biden has amended the Presidential Disaster Declaration for Texas counties affected by severe weather and flooding that began on April 26. This amendment will provide critical aid to communities across the state that have been impacted by the recent storms.

Governor Abbott expressed his gratitude towards federal partners for their continued collaboration in ensuring that Texans have the necessary resources to recover and rebuild. The partial approval authorizes all categories of work under the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Public Assistance program for seven designated counties. This will allow these counties to utilize grant funding for emergency work and repair or replacement of disaster-damaged public infrastructure.

The grant funding provided under FEMA's Public Assistance program covers jurisdictional expenses for debris removal, emergency protective measures, roads and bridges, water control facilities, public buildings and contents, public utilities, parks, recreational facilities, and other facilities. The eligible counties include Harris, Liberty, Montgomery, Polk, San Jacinto, Trinity, and Walker. However, Governor Abbott's request for 21 additional counties to be included in FEMA's Public Assistance program is still under review.

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Furthermore, FEMA has approved the State of Texas' request to add more counties to the Presidential Disaster Declaration. This grants eligibility for FEMA's Individual Assistance programs in these counties. Qualifying Texans who have been impacted can now apply for Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Individual Assistance Program funding to assist with expenses such as temporary housing, emergency home repairs, uninsured and underinsured personal property losses, disaster legal services, disaster unemployment assistance, and medical expenses caused by the disaster.

The additional counties approved for Individual Assistance programs include Calhoun, Eastland Guadalupe Hardin Harris Jasper Jones Lamar Liberty Montgomery Polk San Jacinto Trinity Walker Waller. Texans can apply for FEMA disaster assistance online at disasterassistance.gov or by calling 800-621-3362.

At Governor Abbott's direction, Texas Emergency Management Chief Nim Kidd has requested the addition of Bell County to become eligible for FEMA Individual Assistance programs. Impacted Texans are encouraged to report damage using TDEM's Individual State of Texas Assessment Tool (iSTAT) surveys online at damage.tdem.texas.gov. These self-submitted surveys help officials connect affected Texans with recovery resources and determine eligibility for federal disaster assistance.

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Governor Abbott has been taking swift action to provide all available resources to support local communities from the impacts of severe weather. This includes readying state emergency response resources ahead of wildfire and severe weather threats, issuing a disaster declaration for affected counties, deploying additional state emergency response resources, increasing the readiness level of the State Emergency Operations Center, and holding briefings with local and state officials.

The Governor also requested a Presidential Disaster Declaration for Texas communities impacted by severe storms and secured partial approval on May 17. He further requested additional counties be added to the declaration on May 19. Governor Abbott continues to provide updates on the state's response and recovery efforts in impacted communities.

With this amended Presidential Disaster Declaration, Governor Abbott hopes to provide much-needed aid and support to all affected communities in Texas. The state will continue working closely with federal partners to ensure that all eligible counties receive necessary assistance in their recovery efforts.

Filed Under: Government, State

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