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A rural road in Grand Forks County shows the effect of high water on Oct. 15, 2019. Adam Kurtz / Grand Forks Herald

Burgum requests Trump disaster declaration after October blizzard

BISMARCK — North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum requested a presidential disaster declaration Friday, Dec. 13, after an October blizzard caused major flooding in the central and eastern parts of the state.

If President Donald Trump approves the declaration, it could free up funding from the the Federal Emergency Management Agency to pay for the state's estimated $9.7 million in damages to public roads and other infrastructure.

Burgum's request names 15 counties in which local governments need federal funding to make the repairs. The counties, which include Grand Forks and Stutsman, are mostly on the eastern side of the state.

"Local governments incurred significant costs as a result of the early October rain and snowstorm, and we appreciate the Trump administration considering our request," Burgum said in a news release.

Burgum requested an extension last month for submitting the request after the governor said the state needed more time to assess the damage from the blizzard.

Trump and FEMA previously approved a similar request in June after spring flooding damaged public infrastructure across the state. Last month, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue granted Burgum's request for a secretarial disaster, which provided federal aid to farmers affected by the flooding.

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