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FEMA denies McAuliffe's request for federal aid February tornadoes

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RICHMOND (WSLS 10) - The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has denied Governor Terry McAuliffe's request for federal assistance to help homeowners impacted by the February 24 tornadoes.

On March 25, McAuliffe requested federal help for recovery in Appomattox, Essex and Sussex counties; the three hardest-hit counties. You can read his request to President Obama here.

In a letter notifying McAuliffe his request was denied, FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate said the damage from the tornadoes "was not of such severity and magnitude as to be beyond the capabilities of the commonwealth, affected local governments and voluntary agencies."

The Commonwealth plans to submit an appeal to FEMA.

Here's the complete news release from the Virginia Department of Emergency Management:

Governor Terry McAuliffe was notified late last Friday that the Commonwealth's request for federal assistance to help individuals and homeowners impacted by the February 24 tornadoes has been denied. In a letter notifying the Commonwealth of the denial, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator Craig Fugate said the damage from the tornadoes "was not of such severity and magnitude as to be beyond the capabilities of the commonwealth, affected local governments, and voluntary agencies."

 

"We're disappointed that our request was denied," said State Coordinator Dr. Jeff Stern. "The Commonwealth intends to submit an appeal to FEMA that further illustrates the widespread impacts from the tornadoes."

 

The Virginia Department of Emergency Management will reach out to emergency management partners in the affected counties to gather any additional information that further supports an appeal for Individual Assistance. States have up to 30 days after receiving a denial letter to submit an appeal to FEMA.

 

On March 25, Governor McAuliffe requested FEMA's Individual Assistance Program for recovery aid in the three hardest-hit counties: Appomattox, Essex and Sussex. View full text of the Governor's letter to President Obama: http://www.vaemergency.gov/sites/default/files/VirginiaPresidentialDisasterDeclarationIARequest-February24Tornadoes.pdf.