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Governor Haslam requests disaster declaration for Tennessee

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Governor Bill Haslam has requested a major disaster declaration from the federal government in the wake of the storm that left thousands without power over the Memorial Day weekend.

“Community leaders, emergency managers, first responders, local officials and non-profits across Tennessee have worked tirelessly to help their neighbors recover from the impacts of the severe storms,“ Haslam said.  “I believe we have demonstrated to federal officials the need for assistance exists and if granted will lessen some of the financial burden on local governments and utilities that have stretched their resources in storm response and recovery efforts,” the governor said in a prepared statement.

In the request, Governor Haslam asked that Shelby County receive both public and individual assistance.

If approved, public assistance money would be used to reimburse local and state government and certain private, non-profit organizations for repairs and work already completed.

Individual assistance would go directly to citizens residing in Shelby County who meet the eligibility requirements.

It’s unclear when President Donald Trump will respond to the request.

The severe storms rolled across Tennessee on May 27, leaving more than 180,000 without power.

Utility crews from various states were brought in to help MLGW restore power as quickly as possible.