Press Releases

Representatives DelBene, Kilmer, and Larsen, Senators Murray and Cantwell, Applaud Biden Administration Major Disaster Declaration Following Winter Storms, Flooding in Northwest Washington

Entire Washington congressional delegation sent a letter to the Biden administration requesting the declaration

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Washington, D.C., January 6, 2022 | comments

Today, Representatives Suzan DelBene (WA-01), Derek Kilmer (WA-06), and Rick Larsen (WA-02), and U.S. Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell (WA) applauded the Biden administration’s approval of a major disaster declaration following winter storms and flooding in Northwest Washington.

This declaration will allow funding to be available to affected individuals in the counties of Clallam, Skagit, and Whatcom and the Lummi Nation, Nooksack Indian Tribe, and Quileute Tribe. Assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster.

“For many Washingtonians whose lives were upended by the historic November floods, these past few months have been incredibly challenging. I am thankful that President Biden is releasing federal assistance to help business owners and families recover,” said Representative DelBene. “I visited some of the hardest-hit communities in my district, including Everson and Sumas, in the immediate aftermath to understand the extent of the damages and meet with local officials and first responders. This federal assistance will be a critical step as we work to rebuild these communities in the wake of this tragedy.”

“The severe storms in November caused power outages and road washouts that have disrupted local economies and the lives of countless families. I’m grateful that the Biden Administration heeded the call of the Washington delegation for federal disaster assistance – which will help our region repair and rebuild essential roadways, and help our communities get back on their feet,” said Representative Kilmer.

“A major disaster declaration helps Northwest Washington residents and small businesses access the critical federal resources needed to start recovering from November’s devastating storms and flooding,” said Representative Larsen. “Officials and first responders in Whatcom and Skagit counties recently showed me the significant damage to local homes, farms, roads and personal property and told me how floods tragically impacted local families, including the family of the late Jose Garcia. I will continue to be a strong advocate for disaster relief to help Northwest Washington communities rebuild and recover.”

“This federal assistance will make an important difference for the families and communities in Northwest Washington whose lives were upended by historic storms and flooding. As a voice for our state in the Senate, I will keep fighting for bold climate action and critical investments that will build climate resilience to help protect our communities from increasingly extreme weather events. And I will always work to get families in Washington state the help they need to recover and rebuild after any natural disaster,” said Senator Murray.

“Northwest Washington communities and Tribal nations are still reeling from the impacts of the historic November floods that decimated homes, farms and livelihoods in the Nooksack River valley and beyond, as well as flooding and mudslides on the Olympic Peninsula that cut off communities from the rest of our state,” said Senator Cantwell. “I appreciate President Biden’s approval of this assistance, which will help those affected get back on their feet through temporary housing, helping repair damaged homes and replace lost property, unemployment insurance, and childcare assistance.”

In December, Representatives DelBene and Kilmer, and Senators Murray and Cantwell led the full Washington state congressional delegation in a letter to President Biden in support of Governor Jay Inslee’s request for a federal emergency disaster declaration as a result of the damages incurred by the severe winter storms.

Residents and business owners who sustained losses in the designated counties can begin applying for assistance by registering online at http://www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for the hearing and speech impaired. The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. PT seven days a week until further notice.

You can find the letter requesting the disaster declaration here.

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