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President Approves Disaster Declaration

WASHINGTON, D.C. (CBS2/FOX28) -- Governor Terry Branstad learned today that President Obama approved his request for federal disaster assistance in 22 counties across Iowa. Assistance will now be available in Audubon, Black Hawk, Butler, Cedar, Des Moines, Grundy, Hamilton, Hardin, Ida, Iowa, Jackson, Jasper, Johnson, Jones, Keokuk, Lee, Linn, Mahaska, Muscatine, Poweshiek, Tama and Washington Counties. The governor sent the request for a declaration on July 29, 2014, in response to significant damage that was caused by severe weather that produced damaging winds, tornadoes, heavy rains, hail, and thunderstorms beginning June 26 through July 7. This is Iowa's third Presidential Disaster Declaration in 2014. The declaration by the President will provide federal funding to the declared counties under the Public Assistance Program. A Presidential Major Disaster Declaration for Public Assistance puts into motion long-term federal recovery programs, some of which are matched by state programs, and designed to help public entities and select non-profits. Public Assistance funds may be used for emergency work and the repair or replacement of disaster-damaged facilities and may include debris removal, emergency protective measures, repair of damaged public property, loans needed by communities for essential government functions and grants for public schools. The Governor also received notification that the Presidential Disaster Declaration includes funding to conduct hazard mitigation activities for the entire state. With this funding, Iowa will be able to minimize the impact of future disasters by taking steps now to strengthen existing infrastructure. This Presidential Disaster Declaration is the 21st Major Presidential Disaster Declaration Iowa has received since March 2007.

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