California Wildfires (DR-1498)

Incident period: October 21, 2003 to March 31, 2004
Major Disaster Declaration declared on October 27, 2003

Updates and Articles, Blogs, and News Releases

November 1, 2003
News Release
Pasadena, CA- To further help individuals and businesses affected by the wildfires, the State of California and the Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in conjunction with affected local governments are opening two additional Local Assistance Centers this weekend. California Governor Gray Davis issued an executive order on Tuesday, October 28, directing the Office of Emergency Services to help local governments and FEMA to expedite the establishment of these centers with the full cooperation of California State agencies.
October 29, 2003
News Release
Washington, DC -- Michael D. Brown, Under Secretary for Emergency Preparedness and Response, urges those affected by the California wildfires to go ahead and apply for assistance by calling toll free to 1-800-621-FEMA (3362). Disaster victims may register by calling this number. They do not have to wait to go to a disaster assistance center. The number for speech and hearing impaired individuals is: 1-800-462-7585.
October 27, 2003
News Release
Washington, DC - The head of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced today that President Bush has declared a major disaster for California, opening the way for the use of federal disaster funds for people besieged by wildfires that have been raging since last week in the southern part of the state.
January 5, 2003
News Release
PASADENA, Calif. -- More than $150 Million dollars in federal and state assistance has been approved for residents affected by the October 2003 Southern California Wildfires, report disaster officials. Because there is such a large amount of taxpayer money involved, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the California’s Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (OES) are working to identify the small percentage of disaster assistance applicants who try to cash in on the misfortune of others.

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