Trump administration approves California’s request for wildfire relief funds


CALIFORNIA (NewsNation Now) — President Donald Trump’s administration approved California’s request for a major disaster declaration for wildfires. Governor Gavin Newsom shared the update Friday.

Trump initially rejected California’s request on Thursday.

“Just got off the phone with @realDonaldTrump who has approved our Major Disaster Declaration request,” tweeted Gov. Newsom.

The California Office of Emergency Services said the federal government approved the request for the following fires:

“We believe we have a strong case that California’s request meets the federal requirements for approval,” a Cal OES official said.

Cal OES said it continues to pursue other avenues for reimbursement and support for wildfire victims.

This was the second of two major disaster declarations California requested within about a month. The president approved the first.

Gov. Gavin Newsom formally submitted a letter to the White House on Sept. 28 asking for a major disaster declaration, said Brian Ferguson, with the governor’s Office of Emergency Services.

Ferguson could not provide a reason for the federal government’s denial.

A major disaster declaration allows for cost-sharing for damage, cleanup and rebuilding between the state and federal governments. It also activates relief programs led by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Five of some of the state’s largest wildfires in modern history have burned within the last couple of months.

The Associated Press and NewsNation affiliates KRON and KGET contributed to this report.

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