Kentucky Emergency Management
President Grants Disaster Declaration Requested by Governor Beshear

Press Release Date:  Friday, May 01, 2015  
Contact Information:  02.330.6633

Terry Sebastian
502.564.2611
502.229.6130
 


FRANKFORT, Ky. (May 1, 2015) – Governor Steve Beshear was notified late Thursday that President Barack Obama has authorized assistance for certain Kentucky counties that suffered significant damage as a result of the February severe winter storm event.
 

“Kentucky communities were hit hard by the devastation caused by this and other subsequent storms,” said Gov. Beshear.  “I am grateful that our request was granted quickly, and our communities appreciate the assistance that will be provided to the most severely impacted areas.”



The President’s action makes federal funding available to affected governments and certain non-profit organizations under FEMA’s Public Assistance Program. 



Disaster requests are pending approval for a subsequent heavy snowstorm in March and a flooding event in April.  FEMA has changed its policies regarding disaster declarations, requiring states to gather much more information about damages before filing a formal declaration request, which can take weeks or even months. FEMA’s review of those requests can be lengthy.  Fortunately, FEMA approved this request within two weeks of receiving it. 


Gov. Beshear declared a statewide emergency on Feb. 16 as a snowstorm dumped record amounts of snow (up to a foot or more) in some counties, followed by historic bitter arctic temperatures and localized flooding.  The extreme temperatures caused significant damage to water plants in some eastern Kentucky counties. Thousands of customers were without water service for several weeks, prompting Kentucky Emergency Management (KYEM) to coordinate delivery of almost 450,000 gallons of water to the impacted counties. 

“Bringing federal assistance to Kentucky has been a team effort among our local, state and federal partners.  I am grateful that we can now begin the important process of moving assistance into the declared areas,” said Michael Dossett, director of Kentucky Emergency Management.



The following counties met their federal thresholds for measurable damage, and will be eligible for assistance for emergency work and the repair or replacement of disaster-damaged public facilities:


Boyd

Boyle

Caldwell

Clark

Estill

Floyd

Harlan

Jackson

Jessamine

Knott

Knox

Lawrence

Lee

Letcher

Lyon

Marshall

Menifee

Metcalfe

Morgan

Pendleton

Perry

Pike

Powell

Simpson

Taylor

Washington

Wolfe


The following counties also qualified for emergency snow assistance: 

Boyd

Boyle

Caldell

Estill

Floyd

Jackson

Jessamine

Knott

Lawrence

Lee

Lyon

Menifee

Morgan

Pike

Powell

Simpson

Taylor

Washington

Wolfe



During the disaster, Gov. Beshear implemented executive orders to protect consumers from price gouging and to allow residents in affected areas to get emergency refills of prescripions, excluding controlled substances.  He also directed the temporary suspension of restrictions on certain motor carriers and utility vehicles delivering disaster relief supplies.


Additional information on KYEM and FEMA’s Public Assistance program can be found at http://kyem.ky.gov/recovery/Pages/Public-Assistance-Program-Overview.aspx where you can also ‘like’ and ‘follow’ KYEM on Facebook and Twitter.