The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
Fredericksburg among localities that may get federal assistance from derecho, other storms
By Chelyen Davis
Gov. Bob McDonnell has asked for federal disaster assistance to cover cleanup costs from the “derecho” and other storms of a few weeks ago.
He asked for help for a number of localities, including Fredericksburg and Culpeper and Orange counties.
Numerous localities suffered damage from severe storms that hit the state between June 29 and July 1, McDonnell said, and the state now has post-storm damage assessments in.
“The historic derecho storm and the follow-up thunderstorms required extraordinary response and recovery efforts at the local and state levels” he said in a news release. “We have determined that Virginia should meet all of the requirements for federal public assistance.
Federal assistance is vitally important to help our localities recover significant costs associated with responding to the storms and keeping our citizens safe.”
Federal disaster assistance can help cover the costs of opening shelters, sending out emergency crews, and repairs to public infrastructure like roads and water system.
It’s not the same thing as the federal individual assistance program, which can help people with personal property losses.
If McDonnell’s request for public help is approved, other localities could be added to the list later.
The storms contributed to 15 deaths, required 47 jurisdictions to declare local emergencies, disrupted the water supply of 8,000 people, and closed 217 roads maintained by the state.
They also cut the power to about 1.3 million customers, the third-highest level of outage ever in Virginia, McDonnell’s release said.