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Arizona Members Of Congress Urge Federal Disaster Declaration After Monsoon Flooding

Angela Gervasi

Almost every member of Arizona’s congressional delegation is urging President Joe Biden to issue a major disaster declaration for the state. It follows flash flooding from heavy monsoon rains in recent months throughout multiple counties. KNAU’s Ryan Heinsius reports.

Democratic Senators Mark Kelly and Kyrsten Sinema along with all but one Arizona U.S. House member signed a letter to the president this week. They say July’s monsoon storms heavily impacted communities in Coconino, Apache and Navajo counties and they support Governor Doug Ducey’s request for help from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

If President Biden approves the major disaster declaration, it would open up additional federal funding, supplies and personnel for recovery efforts from unprecedented flash flooding.

Ducey previously issued an emergency declaration in July and another last month following what Coconino County flood officials called a "200-to-500-year rain event" over the Museum Fire burn scar. It and other flash floods inundated several Flagstaff neighborhoods.

City officials say as of Wednesday’s assessment, floods this year have caused approximately $12.6 million dollars in damage to private property and city infrastructure and impacted 255 homes.

Ryan joined KNAU's newsroom as executive producer in 2013. He covers a broad range of stories from local, state and tribal politics to education, economy, energy and public lands issues, and frequently interviews internationally known and regional musicians. Ryan is an Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a frequent contributor to NPR.
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