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Delaware seeks federal aid for August storm damage

Kelli Steele
Delaware Public Media

Delaware is seeking federal aid for the storms it saw last month.

Gov. John Carney submitted a request to President Donald Trump for a federal disaster designation in the wake of August storms that produced flooding, damaging winds and multiple tornadoes.

Carney’s request estimates more than $6.7 million in damage to public property, private residences up and down the state were also damaged.

“So that 6.7 is what we’re expecting in public infrastructure damage as well response expenses, and then additional individual assistance, if approve which we’re hoping it will be, would be well in excess of that,” said Delaware Emergency Management Agency (DEMA) spokesman Jeff Sands.  

The damage assessment included local, state and federal agencies using tools like flyovers from the Delaware Civil Air Patrol and drone footage to assess the damage.

“We presented a case in quite a lengthy document. We performed the joint damage assessments with [the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)],” said Sands. “And there’s just a number of different pieces. But we’ve kind of, demonstrated, I think, the need very well, and so ultimately [FEMA] is going to be the ones to determine based on the factors that we’ve provided and some of the figures exactly how much funding goes out.”           

Sands says the Milford Housing Development Corporation is busy taking requests from people looking to tap into the state’s newly created resiliency fund meant to mitigate the cost of storm damage to private residences.

He says the state is hoping for an answer on the federal disaster declaration request from the Trump administration sometime early next week.

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