All members of Tennessee’s congressional delegation signed on to a letter urging President Joe Biden to approve an emergency declaration submitted by Governor Bill Lee.
The declaration, which was presented in early December, follows destruction from severe weather that impacted residents in Tennessee and Kentucky.
In total, four Tennessee residents were killed during the tornadoes, with even greater destruction occurring across the state-line in Kentucky.
“We write to urge swift approval of Governor Bill Lee’s request for a major disaster declaration pursuant to the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act due to severe weather that occurred on December 10 and 11, 2021,” the letter from the eleven lawmakers described.
“West and Middle Tennessee experienced two lines of severe weather that began on the evening of December 10, 2021, and continued into the morning of December 11, 2021. The combination of heavy rain, powerful thunderstorms, and tornadic activity damaged roads, homes, and businesses as the storms moved northward into Kentucky. Hazardous travel conditions, power outages, and damage to water infrastructure have been reported across the affected areas. Five people lost their lives because of this severe weather, and seventy-four more were reported injured as a result of the storms.”
If approved, the measure would provide federal resources to assist Cheatham, Decatur, Dickson, Dyer, Gibson, Lake, Obion, Stewart, and Weakley counties during the restoration process.
Specifically, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) would reimburse local jurisdictions for the work covered under the declaration or supply direct help.
“Our emergency officials, first responders, and law enforcement brought hope where there was none in the aftermath of these storms,” Lee said at the time. “Our effort now will be to bring as much relief as possible to these devastated communities.”
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