Salem, Ore. --State and federal officials announced today that Wasco County is eligible for disaster assistance to help local governments rebuild public property damaged as a result of the severe winter storm and flooding during the period of December 14-15, 2006.
Recovery funds, authorized under the major disaster declaration issued by President Bush on February 20, 2007, are available through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Public Assistance program. The declaration was amended March 16, 2007 to include Wasco County.
“Assistance for Wasco County was approved following a review of damage data gathered by federal and state disaster recovery officials,” said State Coordinating Officer Abby Kershaw.
Affected local governments are eligible to apply for federal funds to pay 75 percent of the approved cost for debris removal, emergency services related to the disaster and repairing or replacing damaged public facilities, such as roads, buildings and utilities.
“Ensuring that vital community services are restored as quickly as possible is part of our continuing commitment to help the state achieve a full and lasting recovery,” said Federal Coordinating Officer Glen Sachtleben.
Procedures for requesting the assistance will be explained at an applicant briefing for local Wasco officials at a location to be announced shortly.
Wasco County is added to the original declaration, which includes the counties of Benton, Clatsop, Columbia, Lincoln, Polk, Tillamook, Wheeler, and Yamhill as well as the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians.
FEMA manages federal response and recovery efforts following any national incident, initiates mitigation activities and manages the National Flood Insurance Program. FEMA works closely with State and local emergency managers, law enforcement personnel, firefighters, and other first responders. FEMA became part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on March 1, 2003.