WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The head of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced today that President Bush has authorized the use of federal disaster funds for Delaware to help communities in New Castle County recover from the remnants of Hurricane Jeanne.
Michael D. Brown, Under Secretary of Homeland Security for Emergency Preparedness and Response, said the President took the action under a major disaster declaration signed last night following a review of FEMA’s analysis of the state’s request for federal aid. The declaration covers damage to public property from severe storms, tornadoes and flooding that occurred over the period of September 28-October 2.
After the declaration, Brown designated New Castle County eligible for federal funds to pay the state and affected local governments and certain private non-profit organizations 75 percent of the approved costs for the restoration of damaged facilities. The funding also covers eligible state and local government costs for debris removal and emergency services related to the disaster.
In addition, federal funding will be available to the state on a cost-shared basis for approved projects that reduce future disaster risks, Brown said. He indicated that additional designations may be made later if requested by the state and warranted by the results of further damage assessments.
James N. Russo of FEMA was named by Brown to coordinate federal recovery operations. Russo said that procedures for requesting assistance will be explained at a series of applicant briefings at locations to be announced shortly in the affected area.
On March 1, 2003, FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. FEMA's continuing mission within the new department is to lead the effort to prepare the nation for all hazards and effectively manage federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident. FEMA also initiates proactive mitigation activities, trains first responders, and manages the National Flood Insurance Program and the U.S. Fire Administration.