Obama declares federal disaster for parts of Maine

Posted Sept. 13, 2011, at 9:09 p.m.
Last modified Sept. 13, 2011, at 9:39 p.m.

AUGUSTA, Maine — President Barack Obama has declared a major disaster for parts of Maine hit by the remnants of Hurricane Irene, paving the way for federal aid to support state and local recovery efforts.

The White House announced Obama’s decision late Tuesday, four days after Gov. Paul LePage requested a federal disaster declaration for Franklin, Oxford and York counties.

Officials said then that a joint federal-state damage assessment found more than $2.4 million in response costs and damages in the three counties.

Obama’s disaster declaration ensures that the federal government would reimburse towns, counties and state agencies 75 percent of the costs incurred in response to high winds, heavy rains and flooding associated with the storm.

Federal funding also is available to offset state and local efforts to lessen hazardous conditions statewide.

Click here to read the letter from Sens. Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins to Obama for disaster relief.