ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP/WCCO) — Gov. Tim Walz is seeking a presidential disaster declaration for spring storms that caused nearly $40 million in damage to infrastructure across Minnesota.
Walz requested the federal aid in a letter Tuesday to President Donald Trump. In the letter, the governor says “The transition from winter to spring in Minnesota was exceptionally difficult this year,” and that the state needs federal help “to recover from this major natural disaster.”
Walz requested the declaration for 51 Minnesota counties and four tribal governments. Officials say flooding, blizzards and strong winds from mid-March to late April caused damage totaling $39 million — well above the $8 million threshold required for a federal declaration.
If granted by Trump, the declaration would reimburse communities for removing debris as well as repairing and replacing damaged infrastructure.
Following Walz’s request, Minnesota lawmakers in Congress — from both parties — also urged the White House to issue a disaster declaration.
“Minnesotans are resilient and have demonstrated their ability to recover from significant disasters, including two other federal disaster declarations in the past year,” a joint letter from lawmakers said. “We are confident that the communities impacted by these storms and flooding will also recover and rebuild, but we urge you to make the federal government a full partner in that effort.”
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)