The White House, President George W. Bush Click to print this document

For Immediate Release
October 18, 2004

Statement by the Press Secretary

The President today declared a major disaster exists in the Commonwealth of Virginia and ordered Federal aid to supplement State and local recovery efforts in the area struck by severe storms and flooding from the remnants of Hurricane Jeanne beginning on September 27, 2004, and continuing.

The President's action makes Federal funding available to affected individuals in the independent cities of Roanoke and Salem, and the counties of Alleghany, Craig, Floyd, Giles, Montgomery, Patrick, and Roanoke.

Assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster.

Federal funding is also available on a cost-share basis for hazard mitigation measures for all jurisdictions in the Commonwealth.

Representing the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Michael D. Brown, Under Secretary for Emergency Preparedness and Response, Department of Homeland Security, named Marianne Jackson as the Federal Coordinating Officer for Federal recovery operations in the affected area.

The Agency said that damage surveys are continuing in other areas, and more counties and additional forms of assistance may be designated after the assessments are completed.

The Agency said that residents and business owners who sustained losses in the designated counties can begin applying for assistance tomorrow by registering online at or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362), or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for the hearing and speech impaired. The toll-free telephone numbers will be in operation 24 hours a day, seven days a week until further notice.



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