The FEMA appeal is on its way. This is the appeal of the decision by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to deny a disaster declaration for Saline and Gallatin County, damaged by tornadoes last month. It was filed Friday, with no expectation of when a determination will be made.
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“We filed our appeal this morning with additional information about more homes that were destroyed, demolished, additional information about those homes. We worked with the local building inspectors to determine some dwellings are now uninhabitable,” Gov. Pat Quinn said. Quinn also spoke on the phone Friday morning with the director of the Department of Homeland Security, asking her “to look kindly on the good people of Southern Illinois in their hour of need,” he said.
Inspectors re-examined Harrisburg and Ridgway this week, and added to the number of homes and businesses destroyed or damaged. The tornadoes killed seven. The original application documented 426 damaged residences, 104 of which were completely destroyed. The disaster declaration being sought extends to Gallatin, Randolph, Saline, Union and Williamson counties. A dollar amount is not specified in the Illinois appeal. The governor says a disaster declaration, if it is forthcoming, would entitle the affected area to a variety of forms of assistance. In 2008, the state was denied FEMA assistance for damage caused by floods in Iroquois and Livingston counties, but an appeal reversed that decision.