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Congressman Jim Costa

Representing the 16th District of California

Costa Statement on Major Disaster Declaration and Upcoming Storms

Feb 16, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Rep. Jim Costa (CA-16) released the following statement as more storms begin to hit California’s San Joaquin Valley.

“Since January, there have been mandatory evacuations up and down the state of California. In Merced County, families have been forced to leave their homes, and the county estimates that there is $3-3.5 million in damage due to the storms during the beginning of January,” said Rep. Costa. “As a result of the storms events in the past four weeks, the cost of damages is only continuing to rise, so while I welcome the major disaster declaration issued by Governor Brown and President Trump, it’s simply not enough. The current declaration only enables public entities in Merced, not individuals, to recoup costs from flood damages that took place at the first of the year.”     

Rep. Costa continued saying, “As Californians gear up for another storm system today and into the weekend, I will be monitoring flood damages and impacts closely. If the time comes, I will be sending letters and picking up the phone to call Governor Brown and the White House to ensure that residents in Fresno, Madera, and Merced counties receive the resources they need to address any catastrophic damages.”  

On February 14, President Donald Trump issued a major disaster declaration for the State of California. The major disaster declaration activates support and resources from Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to counties in California that have affected by storm events that took place January 3 through January 12. Merced County is one of 34 counties that are eligible to apply for public assistance grants.  For-profit entities and individuals are not eligible to apply for public assistance grants.

Separately, on February 14, President Trump issued an emergency declaration for Butte, Sutter, and Yuba counties for storms events that began on February 7 and is continuous.