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FEMA denies Maryland’s and Virginia’s emergency declaration for security costs

Police extend the security perimeter around the United States Capitol building by pushing people back on East Capitol Street to 3rd Street on Sunday. (Evelyn Hockstein/for The Washington Post)

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has denied requests from Maryland and Virginia for an emergency declaration to cover expenses associated with responding to the Capitol riot and increasing security around President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration.

FEMA’s decision — which both states plan to appeal — could mean the states would not receive federal funds for providing law enforcement personnel and other support to help restore control after pro-Trump rioters stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, and to enhance security for Wednesday’s ceremony.

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Both Maryland and Virginia sent thousands of state and local police to help with the unprecedented security crackdown that was launched in the nation’s capital after the riot. A U.S. Capitol Police officer was fatally injured in the violence, and a member of the mob was fatally shot by a police officer. Three other rioters died of medical emergencies.

With extremist groups threatening to again descend upon Washington before or during Biden’s inauguration, thousands of additional police and National Guard troops have been deployed to secure a vast security zone around the Capitol and the White House.

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Alena Yarmosky, a spokeswoman for Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D), said Virginia could lose out on up to 75 percent of federal reimbursement for the costs of deploying the Virginia Emergency Support Team and other personnel to the capital. She said the commonwealth plans to appeal the decision but will not do so until after noon on Wednesday, when Biden becomes president.

Mike Ricci, a spokesman for Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R), tweeted that the state will appeal as well.

FEMA’s decision was first reported by the Wall Street Journal.