Governor Proclaims Santa Barbara County in a State of Emergency

$8.5 Million in Damages May Get Federal Help

Governor Jerry Brown today declared 19 California counties to be under a State of Emergency as a result of massive rain falls occurring from March 15 through March 27, 2011.

The counties included in the Governor’s Proclamation are: Alameda, Amador, Butte, Contra Costa, Del Norte, Humboldt, Madera, Mariposa, Mendocino, Monterey, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, Sierra, Stanislaus, Sutter, Trinity, Tuolumne, and Ventura.

Michael Harris, Emergency Operations Chief for the County, stated, “Throughout Santa Barbara County there was approximately $8.5 million in damages and response costs. Government property such as roads, drainage areas and buildings were severely damaged.”

Harris went on to state, “By doing this, Governor Brown is asking the federal government for financial assistance. There is no guarantee that help will be made, it is simply a request to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for help given the enormity of the costs.”

Harris added, “Some of the damage in the county is major. The Guadalupe Dunes Road, for example, was totally destroyed. The cities of Solvang and Santa Maria also had damage to roads and drainage areas. Given the budget crises faced by local government, any assistance from the state or federal governments would be helpful.”

The Office of Emergency Services will continue to work with the impacted County departments, cities and federal officials to document the damage and seek federal financial relief. While some repairs have been made, other longer-term projects will require months or years. A final determination by the federal government to provide assistance may take several days.

Source: Santa Barbara County Office of Emergency Services

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