WASHINGTON--Since the deadly tornadoes first struck parts of the country earlier this week, the federal government has been in constant contact with all of the impacted states as they responded to and began recovery efforts from these devastating storms.
Yesterday, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Craig Fugate joined the President and the First Lady in Alabama to tour damaged areas and to meet with Governor Robert Bentley and other state and local officials and families affected by the devastation. FEMA's Deputy Administrator Rich Serino was on the ground with Georgia Governor Nathan Deal on Thursday, and was in Mississippi with Governor Haley Barbour yesterday.
Tomorrow, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, Administrator Fugate, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Small Business Administration Administrator Karen Mills will join state and local officials on the ground in Alabama and Mississippi to survey the damage and recovery efforts underway. More details on that trip will be released today.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Administrator Jane Lubchenco will also be on the ground in Birmingham today.
Last night, the President signed major disaster declarations for Mississippi and Georgia, in addition to the Alabama major disaster declaration signed on April 28, which make federal assistance available to individuals who suffered personal property damages or losses, and for public infrastructure, such as schools, fire stations and libraries. Damage assessments are ongoing, and additional counties may be designated to receive assistance as they are completed.
"Our top priority is to support the states and communities affected by this as recovery efforts are underway," said FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate. "We will continue to work with our federal, state, local and private sector partners -- as well as the American public -- to support the affected families, neighborhoods and communities as they work to rebuild and recover, for as long as it takes."
Since the immediate impact of the storms, the President, Secretary Napolitano, and Administrator Fugate, have been in constant contact with the governors of all the impacted states to ensure they have the support they need.
At the request of the respective states, FEMA currently has personnel on the ground in Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, Kentucky and Tennessee, and commodities strategically pre-positioned in the region.
Additional information on the coordination efforts of FEMA and its federal partners, updated as of 12 PM EDT today, can be found below:
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)
- Two Incident Management Teams are in Alabama, one team is in Mississippi, one team is in Georgia, and two teams have been deployed to Mississippi and Kentucky respectively, to assist in coordination efforts as the states continue to respond and begin to recover from this devastating storm outbreak.
- FEMA liaison officers are in Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, Kentucky and Tennessee.
- An Incident Support Base has been established in Maxwell, Alabama to move supplies such as water, infant t...