Washington, D. C. -- The head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced today that federal disaster aid has been made available for Guam to supplement territorial and local response efforts for Super Typhoon Pongsona that struck the island on December 8.
FEMA Director Joe M. Allbaugh said the assistance was authorized under a major disaster declaration issued by President Bush.
"The President's swift response provides the resources to help meet immediate emergency needs as we begin the process for determining further recovery requirements," Allbaugh said.
Allbaugh noted that approximately 50 FEMA personnel are already on the island, including Federal Coordinating Officer David Fukutomi and an advance team of FEMA disaster specialists to conduct rapid needs assessments. He said those forces will be augmented by the full deployment of additional FEMA and other federal disaster personnel early this week.
Following the President's action, Allbaugh designated the territory and affected local governments eligible for federal funding to pay 75 percent of the approved costs for debris removal and emergency protective measures, including requested emergency work undertaken by the federal government. The declaration also makes cost-shared funding available to the territory for approved projects that reduce future disaster risks.
Allbaugh indicated that additional forms of assistance may be designated as soon as damage can be assessed in the stricken area.