Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) on Friday requested a presidential disaster declaration for six jurisdictions in Maryland in the wake of the derecho storms that swept across the region last month.
Baltimore and Calvert, Charles, Kent, Montgomery and St. Mary’s counties were included in the request, which seeks reimbursement for local governments for up to 75 percent of the costs associated with response efforts and cleanup of the storms.
O’Malley administration officials said the request also seeks statewide hazard mitigation funds, which are intended to help government agencies reduce the threat of future events. More counties could be added to the request later, they said.
Virginia Gov. Robert F. McDonnell (R) made a similar request this week.
Following the storms, more than a million Marylanders were left without power, some for more than a week.
“In the aftermath of the historic storms in June, local governments around Maryland, and especially those in the jurisdictions included in this request, took extraordinary measures to remove debris, direct traffic at intersections without power and provide cooling centers for the many thousands of residents without power during a prolonged heat wave,” O’Malley said in a statement. “That’s why we are seeking assistance from our federal partners to help our State recover from the unanticipated costs of these storms.”
The White House on Friday declared major disaster areas in Virginia and ordered federal aid to help local recovery efforts after the storms of June 29-July 1. Federal funding is available to eligible local governments and some private nonprofit organizations for emergency work and the repairs of facilities damaged in several dozen counties and cities, including Fairfax and Manassas Park.