WASHINGTON – The Maryland congressional delegation today strongly urged the Trump administration to quickly approve the state’s request for a federal major disaster declaration and supplementary assistance under the Stafford Act following the devastating mid-May storms, rain, landslides and flooding in Frederick and Washington counties.
In a joint letter to the president, the congressional delegation noted that the storm event had a “massive impact” to critical infrastructure, transportation routes, schools, businesses and residences. Several bridges, culverts and roads require total replacements; an important pumping station needs major repairs; and historic resources were significantly damaged. The delegation also highlighted that these effects of this damage were particularly acute in remote and rural areas. The congressional delegation cited initial estimates for public infrastructure damages and repair in Washington County at about $4.5 million, and for Fredrick County, including Frederick City, at around $8 million.
“We agree that this event was of such severity and magnitude that effective recovery is beyond the capabilities of the State of Maryland and Frederick and Washington County governments alone,” the delegation wrote to President Trump. “MEMA estimates that the damages in the affected counties will far exceed the per capita Public Assistance threshold. … We therefore strongly support Governor Hogan’s request for a major disaster declaration and for supplementary federal assistance, including all categories of Public Assistance for Frederick and Washington Counties and statewide Hazard Mitigation assistance.”
The congressional delegation also noted that the U.S. Small Business Administration has already approved a similar request for a physical disaster declaration for Frederick County and surrounding areas due to the same storm events.
The letter to President Trump, which also was copied to Regional Administrator Mary Ann Tierney, FEMA Region III, was signed by Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen, and Congressmen Steny H. Hoyer, Elijah E. Cummings, C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger, John P. Sarbanes, Andy P. Harris, M.D., John K. Delaney, Anthony G. Brown and Jamie B. Raskin.