FEMA approves major disaster relief for Connecticut

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Gov. Ned Lamont announced on Sunday, March 29, that he has been notified by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) that his request for a major disaster declaration for the State of Connecticut in response to the COVID-19 pandemic has been approved. The decision unlocks additional federal assistance programs for the state.

The public assistance will be used for impacted state agencies and municipalities in all eight counties. FEMA will reimburse 75 percent of the costs associated with their response and emergency protective measures.

“I am grateful that the federal government is recognizing the severity of this pandemic in Connecticut and the impact it is having on the health and safety of the people of our state,” Lamont said in a press release. “It is an important step in providing critical aid in our communities.”

The governor said that funding is imperative to protecting the health and safety of Connecticut residents to further limit the spread of the virus. He credited Connecticut’s congressional delegation for advocating for the state’s need.

The governor’s other request for disaster assistance, including individual assistance that could provide Connecticut residents with a number of critical benefits, such as expanded unemployment assistance, food benefits, and child care assistance, remains under review by the White House.

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“I remain hopeful that our request for assistance for individuals will also be approved because this pandemic has had a significant impact on the livelihoods of so many people in Connecticut,” the governor said in the press release. “Thousands of workers and families are badly hurting. Unlocking this assistance would mean expanded unemployment benefits for those who are out of work because of the emergency, needed food benefits, child care assistance, and a host of other critically important aid.”