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McDonnell requests disaster assistance for damage caused by Sandy

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Gov. Bob McDonnell has asked for federal disaster assistance to help 28 Virginia communities recover from the effects of Hurricane Sandy, which hit the state in late October.

The storm caused high winds, heavy rains, coastal erosion and tidal flooding to the eastern portion of the commonwealth and dropped heavy snowfall in the west and southwest.  The hurricane caused three tragic deaths in Virginia.

The governor requested federal aid through FEMA’s individual assistance program for Accomack County.  The program provides grants, low-interest loans and disaster housing assistance to homeowners and renters.  The governor also requested disaster unemployment assistance and legal services.

“More than 240 homes were damaged in the Saxis, Sanford and Messongo areas of Accomack County, and most of the damage is not covered by insurance. That is a significant impact to the residents of those communities and federal assistance is critical in helping them recover,” McDonnell said in a statement.

The governor also requested FEMA’s public assistance program for the counties of Accomack, Arlington, Clarke, Craig, Culpeper, Essex, Fauquier, Frederick, Greene, Highland, King and Queen, Lancaster, Loudoun, Madison, Mathews, Middlesex, Nelson, Northampton, Northumberland, Prince William, Rappahannock, Shenandoah, Surry, Warren, and Westmoreland and the cities of Fairfax, Falls Church and Manassas.

The program would make funding available to reimburse state and local governments for costs associated with response and recovery efforts, such as debris removal and related emergency services.  If the governor’s request is approved, and if sufficient damage information is collected, then other localities could be added to the declaration. 

In addition, Governor McDonnell requested hazard mitigation assistance for all Virginia localities. The program helps local and state governments take actions to reduce the impact of future disasters, such as elevating homes in flood zones, flood-proofing businesses and other measures.


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