President Obama grants Gov. Rick Snyder's request for emergency declaration in Flint

Request for major disaster declaration was denied 

Saturday, Jan. 16, 2016

LANSING, Mich. - President Barack Obama today declared a federal emergency in Flint, based on Gov. Rick Snyder's request made on Thursday, January 14, providing resources to help provide residents access to safe, clean water.

Obama denied an additional request for a major disaster declaration.

"I appreciate the President approving my federal emergency request and supporting Flint during this critical situation," Snyder said. "I have pledged to use all state resources possible to help heal Flint, and these additional resources will greatly assist in efforts underway to ensure every resident has access to clean water resources."

Snyder received notice from FEMA this afternoon that emergency relief has been approved in the form of water, water filters, filter replacements and water test kits. The period of assistance is up to 90 days. Under the Stafford Act, resources totaling $5 million can be used for federal emergencies, and the state is required to match 25 percent. If the $5 million is exhausted, Congress has the option to approve additional funding.

The governor had also requested a major disaster declaration, which was denied based on the legal requirement that under the Stafford Act disaster relief is available only for natural events, fires, floods, or explosions. The state is now actively reviewing the process for appealing the disaster declaration denial.