President Bush has declared three more counties disaster areas, a move the frees up more federal help in the cleanup after Sunday’s tornado that cut a swatch through northern Iowa and flatted a third of the town of Parkersburg.
Individuals, government agencies as well as certain non-profit groups in Black Hawk, Buchanan and Delaware Counties will now be eligible for an array of federal assistance. On Tuesday — two days after the tornado struck — the president approved a declaration that labeled Butler County a federal disaster area.
Governor Chet Culver’s office issued a statement late Friday. "I just returned from my second trip to the affected areas yesterday and I am encouraged by the cooperation between state, local and federal officials to help those Iowans affected recover as quickly as possible," Culver said. "And Iowans all across the state have done what they always do during challenging times – shown their generous spirit and done what they could to help their neighbors in need. By locking arms and working together, I am confident that we will rebuild these communities and return life to normal for the people of Northeast Iowa."
Residents in federal disaster areas may be eligible for federal grants to cover the cost of temporary housing and home repairs that are not covered by insurance.