DENVER, Colo. -- The U.S. Department of Homeland Security's Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has authorized the use of federal funds to help with firefighting costs for the Canyon Creek Fire in Yellowstone County.
FEMA Regional Administrator Robin Finegan approved the state's request for a federal Fire Management Assistance Grant (FMAG) immediately upon receiving the state's request at 10:00 p.m. MDT Monday evening. At the time of the request, the fire was threatening 256 homes in and around Laurel, Montana. Mandatory evacuations were in place and affected approximately 200 people. The fire is also threatening utilities, railroads, a refinery and rangeland in the area.
The authorization makes FEMA funding available to pay 75 percent of the state's eligible firefighting costs under an approved grant for managing, mitigating and controlling designated fires. These grants do not provide assistance to individual home or business owners and do not cover other infrastructure damage caused by the fire.
Fire Management Assistance Grants are provided through the President's Disaster Relief Fund and made available by FEMA to assist in fighting fires that threaten to cause a major disaster. Eligible items can include expenses for field camps; equipment use, repair and replacement; mobilization and demobilization activities; and tools, materials and supplies.
FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders and to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.