SPRINGFIELD – Gov. Rod R. Blagojevich today asked President Bush for federal assistance to help local governments in 21 southern Illinois counties recoup some expenses related to the March floods, including costs for response and recovery efforts, as well as repair or replacement of public property. A recent assessment of the flood’s impact on southern Illinois units of local government conducted by the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) documented flood-related expenses totaling more than $12 million.
Counties included in the Governor’s request for federal assistance are Alexander, Fayette, Franklin, Gallatin, Hamilton, Hardin, Jackson, Jasper, Johnson, Marion, Massac, Perry, Pope, Pulaski, Randolph, Richland, Saline, Union, Wayne, White and Williamson.
“This has been a particularly tough year for southern Illinois, first with the ice storm in February, then the floods in March,” said Gov. Blagojevich. “Even with the extensive help provided by the State after both of these events, local governments in some of these areas have spent practically their last penny dealing with these disasters. I urge President Bush to recognize the urgent need for this assistance and grant my request.”
The Governor today also declared Jasper, Richland and Wayne counties state disaster areas as a result of the March floods. The other counties requested today were included in a state disaster declaration issued by the Governor on March 20. Counties must be declared state disaster areas before they can be considered for federal disaster assistance.
On May 23, Gov. Blagojevich submitted an appeal asking the federal government to reconsider its denial of federal disaster assistance for people and businesses in 15 southern Illinois counties affected by severe flooding in March. That request is still pending.