Sens. Mikulski and Cardin Lead Maryland Delegation in Requesting Major Disaster Declaration for Maryland Following Superstorm Sandy

From the office of U.S. Senator Barbara Mikulski:

Delegation asks President Obama to support Governor O’Malley’s request for a major disaster declaration as communities across Maryland struggle to recover from Super-Storm Sandy

U.S. Senators Barbara A. Mikulski and Ben Cardin (both D-Md.) were joined by members of Maryland’s Congressional Delegation today in sending a letter to President Barack Obama supporting Governor O’Malley’s request for a declaration of a major disaster for the State of Maryland as a result of Super-Storm Sandy. If awarded, Maryland will become eligible for federal disaster recovery dollars through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), ensuring the state’s already strained budget is not stretched any thinner. The letter was signed by Senators Mikulski and Cardin, as well as U.S. Representatives Steny H. Hoyer (D-Md.), Roscoe E. Barlett (R-Md.), Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.), John P. Sarbanes (D-Md.), Donna F. Edwards (D-Md.) and Andy Harris (R-Md.).

“Super-Storm Sandy delivered severe storms, flooding, winds, unprecedented levels of precipitation, and heavy snowfall to the State,” Team Maryland wrote. “[T]his determination is necessary to address sheltering needs, resource transportation, debris removal, and evacuation assistance in advance of this storm. This situation has the potential to negatively impact services in other areas, given an already strained state budget environment.”

The major disaster declaration would provide Individual Assistance for the counties of Dorchester, Somerset, and Worcester including Ocean City; Public Assistance for all counties within the state and the Independent City of Baltimore; and Hazard Mitigation for all counties and the Independent City of Baltimore.

Prior to the storm, Team Maryland urged President Obama to support Governor O’Malley’s request for a Pre-Disaster Declaration, which the Administration approved. That declaration ensured that Maryland became eligible for federal disaster funding from FEMA as the state prepared for potential damage. That request is available here.

Super-Storm Sandy and preparations preceding it lasted from October 25 to November 4. The storm included maximum wind speeds of 90 mph and deposited up to two inches of rain per hour from the Delmarva to the I-95 corridor. The damages experienced from this storm have ranged from severe flooding from heavy rains, high winds and significant coastal flooding in the eastern region of the State; heavy rains, high winds and significant coastal flooding along the Chesapeake Bay in the densely populated central region; and significant heavy wet snowfall and rain in the western portion of the state.

The full text of the delegation’s letter of support is as follows:

November 14, 2012
The President
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, D.C. 20500

Dear Mr. President:

We are writing to express our very strong support for Governor O’Malley’s November 8, 2012 request for a declaration of a major disaster for the State of Maryland as a result of Super-Storm Sandy which initially affected Maryland beginning October 25, 2012 through November 4, 2012. Given the significant impact that this storm had on Maryland’s already thin resources, we respectfully request that you urgently approve Federal assistance.

Super-Storm Sandy delivered severe storms, flooding, winds, unprecedented levels of precipitation, and heavy snowfall to the State. Governor O’Malley took appropriate action under Maryland law, directing the execution of the State CORE Emergency Operations Plan. The Governor further declared that a State of Emergency existed within the entire state beginning October 27, 2012 and the Maryland National Guard was called into service. However, this determination is necessary to address sheltering needs, resource transportation, debris removal, and evacuation assistance in advance of this storm. This situation has the potential to negatively impact services in other areas, given an already strained state budget environment.

Maryland and its local jurisdictions have contributed a vast amount of resources in a very short period. The state continues to assess the full amount of damages and losses for this disaster, although preliminary assessments show severe damage to infrastructure and public safety needs. The assistance requested will provide vital resources to save lives and protect property. We appreciate your consideration of Maryland’s request, and look forward to continue working with you in this recovery.

Sincerely,

Barbara A. Mikulski
United States Senator

Ben Cardin
United States Senator

Steny H. Hoyer
Member of Congress

Roscoe E. Bartlett
Member of Congress

Elijah E. Cummings
Member of Congress

Chris Van Hollen
Member of Congress

C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger
Member of Congress

John P. Sarbanes
Member of Congress

Donna F. Edwards
Member of Congress

Andy Harris
Member of Congress

Cc: MaryAnn Tierney, Regional Administrator
FEMA Region III
615 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19106-4404

Comments

  1. Larry Smith says

    State budgetary concerns don’t seem like a valid reason for requesting assistance, since the Federal Government is actually broke, while the State of Maryland is actually in balance… Would seem more appropriate for our state leaders to make the case that U.S. taxpayers–and their children who will be saddled with the debt–benefit from the Maryland resources that were damaged/lost.

    Well-loved. Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2
    • The Money Tree says

      What total BS and all of them ought be ashamed of themselves. A disaster in Long Island isn’t an excuse to pilfer money from the national coffers to fill budget gaps unrelated (or marginally related) to a weather event. These two fools and those like them are exactly whey we’re 16 trillion in debt and counting. Earth to Senator Thief and Thiefess and the master thief that runs this state…institutional theft is still theft.

      Well-loved. Thumb up 10 Thumb down 4
      • DaggerDave says

        Money Tree, Governor O’Malley declared a state of emergency for the entire state ahead of the storm. The storm hit, he made the disaster declaration and President Obama approved the declaration. Same procedure for New York, New Jersey and every other state affected by the storm.

        Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 5 Thumb down 3
        • The Money Tree says

          What does that have to do with it? There’s no reason for this letter unless they want something from the government – last I checked usually disaster relief doesn’t usual mean extra donuts.

          Thumb up 3 Thumb down 4
        • ALEX R says

          Except for the states actually seriously impacted like NY, NJ, etc., by the storm it was justified. For Maryland it was political payoff in return for MOM campaigning for the Pres.

          Thumb up 0 Thumb down 4
  2. HYDESMANN says

    WHERE was Obama? I think he finally made it to NJ & NY yesterday.Oh yea, he was vacationing in Burma.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 2 Thumb down 6
  3. Fed Up says

    Larry hit the nail on the head. In fact, MD was and is an economic disaster area every day. The only reason the State balances its budget is because it cannot print money like its larger, more bloated Federal compadre! NY and NJ coastal communities are in desperate need of help. No so much here – be thankful and move on. Two incompetent Senators show us once again why they should have retired 20 yrs ago!

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 6 Thumb down 3
    • The Money Tree says

      You think it’s an economic disaster now; wait until the inevitable massive federal employee layoffs come…you can’t build an economy around a federal government now running trillions on dollars in the red and delude yourself into believing that bill won’t come due. Md. has done everything it can to run private enterprise out of the state and now with O’Malley cheerfully embracing Obamacare and gleefully enacting massive regulation by the feds we don’t and won’t have enough of a private capital economy left to hold up this house of cards.

      Well-loved. Thumb up 9 Thumb down 4
      • ALEX R says

        The let the house of cards fall. Unfortunately that is what it will take for people to wake up.

        Thumb up 3 Thumb down 3
        • The Money Tree says

          I’m afraid of the very hard landing. The longer we ignore reality the harder that landing will be. It’s already scary time stuff…

          Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1
          • ALEX R says

            A prophet is without honor among his own people. Matthew 13:57.

            I share your concern but I can only warn people what awaits them.

            Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3
  4. B says

    Every state in the union is now eligible for disaster relief after the re-election of Barack Obama

    Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2
  5. Cdev says

    So Andy Harris could not sign the last letter but was on board with this one. Did he all the sudden realize Ocean City is in his district?

    Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2