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President signs disaster declaration for Tama County

August 6, 2014
By John Speer - Editor ( , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

The office of Iowa Governor Terry Branstad said notice was received on Tuesday, Aug. 5, which said President Obama approved the Governor's request for a Presidential Disaster Declaration for 22 counties including Tama impacted by severe weather in June and July.

Tama County was hit by both flooding and tornadoes in early July.

Southern parts of the county including the City of Chelsea, portions of the Meskwaki Settlement and areas along the Iowa River and some creek were flooded.

Article Photos

President Obama

Chroincle - News-Herald file

U.S. Highway 63 at the south edge of Tama was closed for about a week due to high waters.

The U.S. Highway 30 Expressway west of Toledo and north of Montour was reduced to one-lane traffic in east and west bound lanes during the period. The Iowa Department of Transportation manned pumps 24 hours a day and built a temporary levy along the north shoulder to keep roadway open.

Tornadoes caused damage in northern Tama County during the same period. The Traer area was reported hardest hit.

In a news release, the Governor's office said the declaration came in response sent the request for a declaration on July 29, 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.

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.



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