WASHINGTON - Chuck Grassley today said President Barack Obama has added several Iowa counties to a major disaster declaration he originally made on March 2.  Today's news triggers the release of FEMA funds to additional counties to help them recover from the severe winter storms that occurred from January 19 - 26.  Additional designations may be made at a later date after further evaluation.

"There has been an enormous amount of damage in Iowa caused by winter storms," Grassley said.  "It's good to see new counties being added so Iowans can continue cleaning up the damage."

FEMA will now provide assistance to Adams, Boone, Buena Vista, Cherokee, Clay, Dallas, Emmet, Greene, Hardin, Ida, Monona, Palo Alto, Pocahontas, Story and Union counties, in additional to those named in the March 2 declaration, through the Public Assistance program.  The Public Assistance program assists state and local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations for emergency work and the repair or replacement of disaster-damaged facilities.

All Iowa counties are also eligible to apply for assistance through the Hazard Mitigation Grant program.  The Hazard Mitigation Grant program assists state and local governments and certain private non-profit organizations for actions taken to prevent or reduce long-term risk to life and property from natural hazards.

Grassley sent a letter to Obama asking him to grant Governor Chet Culver's request to declare Iowa a major disaster area as a result of the severe winter storms that occurred from January 19 - 26.

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