JEFFERSON CITY, MO (STL.News) President Donald Trump has approved Missouri Governor Mike Parson’s request for a federal major disaster declaration for Missouri as a result of severe storms that swept across the state on May 3 and 4, 2020.

The disaster declaration means federal Public Assistance will be available to 19 Missouri counties, which allows local governments and nonprofit agencies to seek assistance for response and recovery expenses associated with the storms.

The counties included in the disaster declaration are Bates, Butler, Carter, Dallas, Douglas, Dunklin, Henry, Hickory, Howell, Laclede, New Madrid, Oregon, Pemiscot, Polk, Ripley, Shannon, Stoddard, Wayne, and Wright.

“As Missouri continues to respond to COVID-19 and build on our economic recovery efforts, Federal Emergency Management Agency assistance will now provide much needed support to local governments and nonprofits that sustained the brunt of the damage from the May storms,” Governor Parson said.  “The hard work of Missouri citizens, businesses, and communities are fueling our recovery, and this federal assistance will help us continue to move our state forward.”

The federal assistance will aid in repair and replacement costs for damage to electric power systems, buildings, bridges, roads, and other public infrastructure.

The disaster declaration also means FEMA Hazard Mitigation assistance will be available to Missouri to assist with cost-effective measures to reduce the potential for future damage to public infrastructure as a result of natural disasters.

Governor Parson requested the federal disaster declaration on June 16 following joint Preliminary Damage Assessments conducted by the State Emergency Management Agency, FEMA, and local officials.  The damage assessments were conducted virtually due to COVID-19. Damage and response costs were preliminarily estimated at more than $9.3 million.

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