President Joe Biden has issued a federal disaster declaration for extensive damage caused by a massive wind and rainstorm in Maine in December, the first of three storms to pummel the state, Democratic Gov. Janet Mills announced Wednesday.
DESPITE LEWISTON SHOOTING, FLOODS, MAINE ‘GETTING STRONGER EVERY DAY,’ GOV. MILLS SAYS
The president’s action frees up federal funding to assist in repairing public infrastructure damage in nine counties from the storm that hit the week before Christmas, causing prolonged power outages, historic flooding and property damage, Mills said.
The declaration also makes allows families to be reimbursed directly for losses in Androscoggin, Franklin, Kennebec, Oxford and Somerset counties, she said.
It was the first of three storms to hit the state and knocked out electricity for about 500,000 homes and businesses. Floodwaters rose to record levels on the Kennebec River, and several riverside communities were overrun.
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That preceded back-to-back coastal storms that wreaked more damage in January. Several fishing shacks floated away in South Portland, Maine, and docks and seaside docks and businesses sustained heavy damage.