Hoeven: Ransom County Added to Federal Emergency Declaration

Senator Presses for Expanded Declaration, Additional Aid to Valley City and Lisbon

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Sen. John Hoeven today said his office has pressed the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to expand the partial Presidential Disaster Declaration issued last week to Ransom County and to provide additional assistance to Valley City. The Senator continues to press FEMA to expand the period the declaration covers back to February 24, the date of the Governor’s original request. The President’s declaration currently covers assistance after April 5. 

“State and local officials report that they are making progress in buttressing defenses against very high levels of water, but clearly they need additional federal help,” Hoeven said. “I urge FEMA and the Administration to act promptly on any requests for additional assistance.”

 Hoeven spoke yesterday with Lisbon Mayor Ross Cole, Devils Lake Mayor Dick Johnson, Burlington Mayor Jerome Gruenberg and other local officials to assess current needs. He and his office followed up with FEMA to press for the inclusion of Ransom County in the declaration and a prompt response to the state’s requests in light of rising water and the need to release additional flows from Baldhill Dam upstream on the Sheyenne River. The addition of Ransom County to the emergency declaration will bring resources to the City of Lisbon, including assistance from federal agencies and their flood-fighting assets.  

The Senator visited Valley City Saturday to inspect flood prevention measures, and speak with city officials about evolving needs. His staff has been in daily contact with Valley City Mayor Bob Werkhoven and city Vice President Jon Wagar to coordinate efforts of the Army Corps of Engineers and to ensure the city has all the resources necessary to fight this year’s flooding. Valley City is in the process of raising dikes by 18 inches in anticipation of a record crest on the Sheyenne River.