Washington, D.C.— Maine’s Congressional Delegation wrote to President Biden today in support of Governor Janet Mills’ request for a Major Disaster Declaration to help address the extreme winter storm damage across ten Maine counties that occurred in December.
U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King and Representatives Chellie Pingree and Jared Golden asked the President to fully grant the Governor's requests to make available federal assistance for Androscoggin, Franklin, Hancock, Kennebec, Oxford, Penobscot, Piscataquis, Somerset, Waldo, and Washington Counties.
“As demonstrated in the Governor’s request, it is clear that each of these counties experienced substantial damages that collectively exceed the State’s capabilities,” the Delegation wrote in the letter. “The storm that entered Maine on December 17 brought wind gusts of nearly 70 miles per hour and more than 2.5” of rain. The multi-day, multi-hazard event caused countless downed trees and power lines across the state, left nearly 420,000 Mainers without power, and resulted in widespread flooding. We received a number of reports of possible gas leaks, contaminated water, and other related hazards and anticipate a lengthy recovery effort.”
“We urge you to expeditiously approve Governor Mills’ request for Major Disaster Declarations for the counties in question,” the Delegation continued. “Expedited review is especially warranted as many of these areas have been affected by other disasters, some natural, some economic, all of which have made this a particularly difficult year for the region. The people of Maine are in great need of this federal assistance, and we thank you for your support.”
Initial estimates placed the cost of damage to public infrastructure alone at $20 million.
Click here to read the full letter from the Maine Delegation.