President Barack Obama has declared an emergency exists in the District of Columbia and ordered federal aid to supplement District and local response efforts due to the emergency conditions resulting from Hurricane Irene beginning on August 26, 2011, and continuing.
Mayor Vincent C. Gray today said he was pleased that the President had declared a State of Emergency for the District of Columbia.
"On Friday, I signed into order a Declaration of Public Emergency, making the District eligible for federal assistance,” Said Mayor Gray. “The President's action authorizes the Federal Emergency Management Agency to provide resources necessary to ameliorate the impact of the hurricane on our city. I applaud the President's swift actions on behalf of the citizens of the District of Columbia."
The President's action authorizes the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to coordinate all disaster-relief efforts with the purpose of alleviating the hardship and suffering caused by an emergency on the local population. It also authorizes FEMA to provide appropriate assistance for required emergency measures authorized under Title V of the Stafford Act, to save lives and to protect property and public health and safety and to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe for the District of Columbia.
Specifically, FEMA is authorized to identify, mobilize and provide, at its discretion, equipment and resources necessary to alleviate the impacts of the emergency. Emergency protective measures, including direct federal assistance, will be provided at 75 percent federal funding.