Illinois U.S. Senator Dick Durbin met with the head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency today to talk about securing federal funding for tornado damaged areas in the southern part of the state. Durbin met with Craig Fugate in Washington. The tornado tore through the Harrisburg area last month. The money would assist in repairs and rebuilding. But FEMA denied the state's request for federal help. After the meeting, Durbin says Illinois is getting another chance.
"I still feel confident, having seen this damage and compared it to a lot of other disasters, that we have a good fighting chance for this federal declaration. I want it to happen, the people down there have suffered enough. Seven people lost their lives, a lot of folks are out of their homes. This federal declaration will help a lot of people get back on their feet."
Durbin says he doesn't know how much money is at stake, but says it's "in the millions." He says his impression is that the first round of application materials were gathered within a week after the tornado and information was lacking. Durbin says he's hopeful a revised application will be sent to FEMA in less than a week. And he says the agency promises once it's received, a decision will be made in a matter of days.
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