7/2/2020 10:58:15 AM
[ST. PAUL, MN] – Governor Tim Walz today requested financial support from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to help Minnesota rebuild after civil unrest damaged public infrastructure and caused extensive fire damage in the wake of George Floyd’s death.
“We’re asking our federal partners to step up and help our communities recover,” said Governor Walz. “We need to come together to ensure Minnesotans who were victims of this destruction have access to critical infrastructure they need so they can go to the grocery store, pick up their medication, and live their lives. Together, we will rebuild.”
“We are committed to helping our communities rebuild, but we can’t do this on our own,” said Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan. “While state, tribal, and local budgets are stretched thin by COVID-19, we need everyone to step up, including the federal government, to restore safety and critical infrastructure to our communities.”
Over 10,000 public safety officials contributed to the effort to restore peace and safety, including the first full mobilization of the Minnesota National Guard since World War II. However, nearly 1,500 Twin Cities businesses were damaged by vandalism, fire, or looting. Current estimates of the damage exceed $500,000,000.
The Governor is requesting that the President “declare a major disaster for the State of Minnesota because of extensive fire damage to public infrastructure caused by civil unrest.” A preliminary damage assessment found more than $15 million of eligible damages directly related to the fires. Federal assistance would reimburse local governments for debris removal, emergency protective measures, and damage to public buildings and equipment.