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PRESIDENT BIDEN APPROVES GOVERNOR SCOTT’S MAJOR DISASTER DECLARATION REQUEST

Berlin, Vt. – President Joseph Biden has approved Governor Phil Scott’s request for a major disaster declaration for Vermont to assist individuals and communities recover from historic flood from July 7-12, 2023. The approval was given in under 24 hours.

“I want to express my sincere appreciation to President Biden and his team at FEMA for their incredibly quick approval of the declaration,” said Governor Scott. “Vermonters are hurting, and federal assistance will be critical as we rebuild and recover. My team is committed to working with federal and local partners to make sure Vermonters get all resources available to them to recover from these catastrophic floods.”

The declaration provides funding under the federal Public Assistance (PA) and Individual Assistance (IA) programs. A Public Assistance disaster declaration allows communities to receive at least 75% reimbursement for emergency storm repairs to public infrastructure. A further declaration for recovery repairs is pending an official Preliminary Damage Assessment (PDA)

The Individual Assistance program helps individuals impacted by the disaster seek reimbursement for necessary expenses and serious needs that cannot be met through insurance or other forms of assistance. Eligible expenses include rental assistance, home repair, home replacement, and lodging, among other expenses. Pending a formal assessment, counties included under this declaration are also pending a PDA.

You can get more information and register at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or call 1-800-621-3362.

Individuals who suffered losses in the storm should continue clean up and repairs, taking photos and documenting expenses. You should also report that damage to Vermont 211, either by dialing 2-1-1 or by visiting vermont211.org. This data informs the disaster assessment and allows FEMA to reach out to applicants directly.

Vermont counties should continue making repairs to public infrastructure, documenting all work carefully for their applications. Eligible reimbursement costs include emergency repair work on public roads, tree and debris removal from public rights of way, municipal employee overtime spent working on the emergency, contractor help, equipment rentals, and other costs associated with the emergency response.