SPRINGFIELD – Governor Rod R. Blagojevich today declared Rockford and Winnebago County a state disaster area for damage caused by flooding early Tuesday morning, and said the state will continue to work closely with local officials to ensure the area recovers from this event as quickly as possible.
“Once again, families in the Rockford area have been forced from their homes by flooding,” Gov. Blagojevich said. “The State of Illinois is committed to helping these communities recover as quickly as possible from this flooding, and we will continue to work with local officials to see how we can help this recovery process.”
Personnel from the Illinois Emergency Management Agency, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency were sent to the affected area this morning after state officials learned of the flooding. They remain on the scene to offer assistance and coordinate any requests for state assets with officials in Springfield.
With the state disaster proclamation, state assistance could help local governments with extraordinary costs incurred in responding to and recovering from the damage. That assistance also could include state assets, such as equipment and work crews, to help with debris removal. A state disaster declaration is also required if the state requests federal disaster assistance, which could make available grants or low-interest loans for individuals and business and reimbursement to local governments for extraordinary expenses. A federal disaster declaration is issued when recovery from a disaster is beyond the capabilities of the local and state governments.