President Approves Declaration for 46 Kansas Counties

WASHINGTON - President George W. Bush today approved Governor Kathleen Sebelius' request for a federal disaster declaration in Kansas for public assistance for 46 counties in Kansas. Bush also approved the activation of the Hazard Mitigation Program statewide.

"This is great news that will truly help Kansans in impacted communities," said Gov. Sebelius. "Many counties throughout our state were significantly damaged by these storms and I'm thankful we now have this federal declaration in place to assist with the recovery efforts."

The request for federal declaration was for areas impacted by severe storms accompanied by large hail, lightning, high winds, tornadoes, and torrential rains resulting in widespread destruction to homes businesses, utilities,and public infrastructure beginning May 22, 2008, and ending June 16, 2008.

Of the 49 counties originally requested by Sebelius, three counties Lincoln, Meade and Morris, did not meet qualifications for public assistance approval.

Counties named in the request are: Barber, Bourbon, Butler, Brown,
Chautauqua, Cherokee, Clark, Clay, Comanche , Cowley, Crawford, Decatur, Dickinson, Edwards, Ellis, Franklin, Gove, Graham, Harper, Hodgeman, Jackson, Jewell, Kiowa, Linn, Logan, Mitchell, Montgomery, Ness, Norton, Osborne, Pawnee, Phillips, Pratt, Republic, Riley, Rooks, Rush, Saline, Seward, Sheridan, Smith, Stafford, Sumner, Thomas, Trego and Wallace. Public Assistance will help counties restore public infrastructure damaged or destroyed by the storms and provides reimbursement to the counties and certain non-profits, including rural electric cooperatives.

"We will continue to work with these counties to ensure they have the
resources needed in response to these disasters," said Maj. Gen. Tod
Bunting, director of Kansas Division of Emergency Management and adjutant general. SBA disaster loans are also being made available to individuals and businesses in Clay, Dickinson, Geary, Marion, Marshall, McPherson, Morris, Ottawa, Pottawatomie, Riley, Saline, Wabaunsee and Washington Counties.

Disaster loans up to $200,000 are available to homeowners to repair or
replace their damaged or destroyed primary residence. Homeowners and renters are eligible for up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged or destroyed personal property. Businesses of any size and private non-profit organizations may borrow up to $1.5 million. The filing deadline to return applications for property damage is August 19, 2008. The deadline to return economic injury applications is March 20, 2009.
For additional information, call the SBA's Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or go on-line to disastercustomerservice@sba.gov or the SBA's website at www.sba.gov/services/disasterassistance. Hearing impaired individuals may contact SBA at (800) 877-8339.


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