WILDFIRE WATCH: FEMA denies individual assistance in wildfire ar - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

WILDFIRE WATCH: FEMA denies individual assistance in wildfire areas

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FEMA denies individual assistance to wildfire areas FEMA denies individual assistance to wildfire areas
OKANOGAN COUNTY, Wash. -

Governor Jay Inslee announced Tuesday that FEMA has denied the state's appeal for Individual Assistance following wildfires in Okanogan County and the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation.

Last month FEMA rejected the state's initial application for federal assistance to individuals and homeowner's impacted by the fires. More than 100 homes were lost in fires, which broke out in mid-July. In a letter from FEMA Administrator W. Craig Fugate, the aid agency said the impact to individuals and homeowners "was not of the severity and magnitude to warrant the designation of Individual Assistance" under FEMA's emergency declaration.

Last month FEMA did approve Inslee's request for public assistance that will help the county and tribal governments pay for repair of infrastructure damaged in the fires.

Governor Inslee called the decision "unfortunate," and says, "the state will stay involved with those affected communities and do our best to help them recover."

The governor will convene an Okanogan Recovery Task Force to explore every option for providing needed assistance. In addition, FEMA has organized a Disaster Housing Assessment Team to look more deeply at unmet housing needs.

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