Nine more localities eligible for help with Irene aftermath


RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Governor Bob McDonnell announced today that nine additional counties and cities were approved for federal disaster public assistance for recovery from Hurricane Irene today. This brings the total of localities approved for federal disaster assistance to 48.

"This is very good news for these local governments that responded to Irene's impact in Virginia," said Governor McDonnell. "Their local budgets were severely affected by the expense of responding, and they also sustained damage to publicly-owned property that can now be repaired. The federal public assistance will be of great help to them."

The disaster assistance covers eligible government and certain nonprofit costs for damage to critical infrastructure, roads, buildings and equipment, debris removal and related emergency services. This is not the type of federal assistance that can help individuals.

Those new localities approved for assistance include the counties of Amelia, Brunswick, Greensville, Hanover, Lunenburg, Northampton, Nottoway and Powhatan and the city of Alexandria.

Previously, the Commonwealth asked for and received assistance for the counties of Accomack, Caroline, Charles City, Chesterfield, Dinwiddie, Essex, Henrico, Isle of Wight, James City, King George, King and Queen, King William, Lancaster, Mathews, Middlesex, New Kent, Northumberland, Prince George, Richmond, Southampton, Surry, Sussex, Westmoreland and York and the cities of Chesapeake, Colonial Heights, Emporia, Franklin, Hampton, Hopewell, Newport News, Norfolk, Petersburg, Poquoson, Portsmouth, Richmond, Suffolk, Virginia Beach and Williamsburg.

Damage assessments for Irene are now complete, but additional localities can be added if eligible damage is discovered or if new information is identified.

State and federal officials will continue to work with local governments over the coming months until all repairs and eligible projects have been completed.

Virginia also requested and received low-interest loans from the Small Business Administration to assist homeowners, renters and businesses recover from Irene.