Friday, September 16, 2016

Governor Larry Hogan’s Request for Presidential Disaster Declaration for Ellicott City, Howard County Approved

Maryland Now Eligible for Federal Assistance Following Historic Flooding

Governor Larry Hogan’s request for a major disaster declaration in the wake of historic flooding in Ellicott City was approved today. Maryland and Howard County will now be eligible for federal assistance to help pay costs associated with the response to and recovery from the July 30 flooding event that damaged much of Main Street in Ellicott City as well as surrounding areas. Governor Hogan requested the assistance in a letter to President Barack Obama on August 12. By granting the declaration, federal assistance will be made available for expenses related to infrastructure repair and replacement, hazard mitigation projects, debris removal, and other costs associated with the storm.

“When this devastating storm hit, we assured residents and leaders in Howard County that our administration would pursue all avenues of support to help our communities rebuild,” said Governor Hogan. “I would like to thank Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman for his leadership and extend my sincerest gratitude to Senator Barbara Mikulski, Senator Ben Cardin, Congressman Elijah Cummings, and the entire Maryland delegation for working diligently at the federal level to secure this vital assistance for businesses, citizens, and public infrastructure damaged by this historic flooding. I am amazed by the resilience of Ellicott City and the surrounding communities and look forward to Main Street again being the focal point of local activity.”

“This is welcome news for the people of Ellicott City,” said Howard County Executive Allan H. Kittleman. “This declaration will help us coordinate and take advantage of the many federal resources available to us. These resources will help us implement long-term flood mitigation projects to rebuild Ellicott City to become a model resilient community. I am thankful to Governor Hogan and our federal delegation for their continued support throughout this process.”

The decision for a disaster declaration comes after the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), and Howard County emergency operations staff conducted damage assessments last month. The flooding, which occurred on a Saturday night, damaged or destroyed dozens of buildings and more than 200 vehicles, and caused the deaths of two individuals. Main Street and the adjacent sidewalks, plus underground infrastructure, also sustained significant damage. Governor Hogan has designated MEMA as the state coordinating agency for the declaration.

“I want to thank my staff at MEMA and those in Howard County who worked closely with FEMA to assess damages and costs caused by the flooding,” said MEMA Executive Director Russell Strickland. “We will continue to work together to apply this federal assistance to repair damaged infrastructure and aid Howard County and Ellicott City in recovery efforts.”

The presidential disaster declaration comes on the heels of several state, local, and federal initiatives designed to assist local residents and business owners.

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