Assistance Would Help State Fight and Recover From the Southern California Wildfires
Tuesday, U.S. Senators Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer (both D-Calif.), and many members of the California delegation of the House of Representatives, wrote to President Bush to support California's request for federal disaster relief. The relief is sought to help California as it battles large wildfires that have been burning in five Southern California counties.
Following is the text of the letter to the President:
November 18, 2008
The Honorable George W. Bush
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
Dear Mr. President:
We write in support of the State of California's request for a Major Disaster Declaration, U.S. Small Business Administration disaster loans and funds from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Emergency Loan Program.
There are currently three large fires burning across Santa Barbara, Los Angeles, Orange, San Bernardino and Riverside Counties, which have been spread by winds as fast as 70 miles an hour. Almost 40 firefighters and residents have been injured, tens of thousands of Californians have been evacuated from their neighborhoods and more than 800 homes have been destroyed.
While conditions have somewhat improved, the brave men and women fighting these fires in Southern California continue to face record high temperatures and unpredictable Santa Ana winds.
A Major Disaster Declaration under the Stafford Act will provide the essential federal resources needed not only to save the lives, homes, and livelihoods of Californians, but also to help people recover and rebuild when these fires are finally extinguished. These resources are urgently needed and will be immediately put to good use.
Thank you for your time and attention to this urgent issue.
U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer
U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein