Obama signs disaster relief for 18 MN counties hit by June storms


President Obama has signed a federal disaster relief declaration for 18 Minnesota counties that were hit by straight-line winds, severe storms and flooding between June 20-26.

The counties affected are Benton, Big Stone, Douglas, Faribault, Fillmore, Freeborn, Grant, Hennepin, Houston, McLeod, Morrison, Pope, Sibley, Stearns, Stevens, Swift, Traverse, and Wilkin.

Read the news straight from the White House, where a press release notes "Federal funding is available to state and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work and the repair or replacement of facilities damaged."

No word on any dollar amounts, but the threshold federal money is $7.2 million in damage.

The White House also says FEMA said additional designations may be made at a later date if requested by the state and warranted by the results of further damage assessments.

Nearly all of the Minnesota Congressional delegation released a joint statement making the announcement:

“The severe storms this June led to high winds and flash flooding in 18 counties in Minnesota, causing extensive damage to roads, culverts, and bridges,” the members said in a press release to BringMeTheNews. “Today’s disaster declaration will help the communities impacted by these storms remove debris and repair critical infrastructure.”

U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken and Representatives Collin Peterson, Michele Bachmann, Keith Ellison, Tim Walz, Erik Paulsen, and Rick Nolan all signed on to the missive.

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