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Indiana Delegation Supports Governor’s Request for Major Disaster Area Declaration

WASHINGTON, DC – The Indiana Congressional delegation today sent a letter to President Barack Obama expressing strong support for Governor Mitch Daniels’ request for a Major Disaster Area Declaration for the State of Indiana following the devastating tornadoes and severe storms that hit southern Indiana on March 2, 2012.

In the letter, the members state, “Shortly after the deadly storms dissipated from the Indiana skies, Governor Mitch Daniels declared a state of emergency invoking the state’s emergency plan in order to aid local and individual rescue and clean-up efforts. However, after surveying the damage and consulting with state and local government officials, it is clear the recovery is beyond the capabilities and resources of the State of Indiana.”

“Hoosiers have a proud and resilient history of triumphing over tragedy and persevering past precarious circumstances. However, the magnitude of the current disaster demands further federal assistance. Together, we firmly believe the next step on the long road to recovery is the issuance of a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration. We hope careful consideration will be given to Governor Daniels’ request, and believe timely federal assistance will significantly assist Indiana’s recovery efforts.”

The full text of the letter follows:

March 09, 2012

The Honorable Barack Obama
President of the United States
The White House
Washington, D.C. 20500

Dear Mr. President:

We are writing to express our strong support for Governor Mitch Daniels' request for a Major Disaster Area Declaration for the State of Indiana following the devastating tornadoes and severe storms that hit Southern Indiana on March 2, 2012.

This period of disastrous weather caused extensive damage to public and private property throughout Southern Indiana. Countless families and businesses are forever changed as a result of these deadly storms. Shortly after the deadly storms dissipated from the Indiana skies, Governor Mitch Daniels declared a state of emergency invoking the state's emergency plan in order to aid local and individual rescue and clean-up efforts. However, after surveying the damage and consulting with state and local government officials, it is clear the recovery is beyond the capabilities and resources of the State of Indiana. This evaluation is reinforced by the joint preliminary damage assessment conducted by the Governor's office and FEMA.

The Governor is requesting federal assistance for Clark, Jefferson, Ripley, Scott, Warrick and Washington counties. These counties in particular need temporary housing, legal assistance, disaster unemployment assistance, crisis counseling and U.S. Small Business Administration Disaster Loans.

The Governor also is requesting Hazard Mitigation statewide. Hoosiers have a proud and resilient history of triumphing over tragedy and persevering past precarious circumstances. However, the magnitude of the current disaster demands further federal assistance.

Together, we firmly believe the next step on the long road to recovery is the issuance of a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration. We hope careful consideration will be given to Governor Daniels' request, and believe timely federal assistance will significantly assist Indiana's recovery efforts.

Thank you for your consideration of this important matter.

Sincerely,

Richard Lugar                                              
United States Senator 

Dan Coats                                                                             
United States Senator

Todd Young
Member of Congress

Dan Burton    
Member of Congress              

Pete Visclosky
Member of Congress              

Mike Pence    
Member of Congress              

Joe Donnelly
Member of Congress

André Carson
Member of Congress

Larry Bucshon
Member of Congress

Todd Rokita
Member of Congress

Marlin Stutzman
Member of Congress

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