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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release July 25, 1997
                        PRESIDENT CLINTON DECLARES 
                         MAJOR DISASTER IN VERMONT

The President today declared a major disaster exists in the State of Vermont, saying, Our thoughts go out to the people of Vermont who have been hit very hard over the past couple of weeks by severe storms and flooding. The President ordered Federal aid to supplement state and local recovery efforts in the area struck by excessive rainfall, high winds, and flooding on July 15-17, 1997.

The President's action makes Federal funding available to affected individuals and local governments in a five-county area. The counties are Caledonia, Franklin, Lamoille, Orleans, and Washington.

Assistance can include disaster housing, grants, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover from the effects of the disaster.

Federal funding also is available to eligible local governments on a cost-sharing basis for the repair or replacement of public facilities damaged by the excessive rainfall, high winds, and flooding. Federal funding is also available on a cost-share basis for hazard mitigation measures.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) said that damage surveys are continuing in other areas, and additional counties may be added after the assessments are completed.