California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s (D) office said the Trump administration rejected the state’s request for a disaster declaration following six wildfires that tore through the state earlier this year, including the largest single blaze in the state’s history.
“The request for a Major Presidential Disaster Declaration for early September fires has been denied by the federal administration,” Brian Ferguson, a spokesperson for the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, told CNN.
State officials are planning to appeal the decision.
Newsom penned a letter to President Trump on Sept. 28 requesting the disaster declaration following a string of wildfires.
The governor noted that the state’s economy had been “significantly damaged” by the COVID-19 pandemic, the major wildfires and poor air quality. He wrote that infrastructure damage estimates exceeded $229 million.
“Federal assistance is critical to support physical and economic recovery of California and its communities,” Newsom wrote. “The longer it takes for California and its communities to recover, the more severe, devastating and irreversible the economic impacts will be.”
The governor wrote that the pandemic-related restrictions and social distancing had interfered with typical evacuation procedures, requiring the state to use hotel rooms instead of congregate shelters.
“Californians are exhausted,” Newsom wrote.
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.