President Donald Trump has granted a request from Governor Laura Kelly for an emergency federal disaster declaration for 18 Kansas counties affected by severe weather, heavy rains and flooding that currently is impacting the state.

The president’s assistance is for the counties of Anderson, Butler, Chautauqua, Cherokee, Coffey, Cowley, Crawford, Elk, Franklin, Greenwood, Harvey, Montgomery, Neosho, Osage, Reno, Sumner, Wilson, and Woodson.  Additional designations may be made at a later date if requested by the state and warranted by the results of further evaluation.

“Due to extreme weather and flooding, Kansas is facing significant weather related challenges,” Kelly said. “I’m pleased the president granted these counties emergency support. Sadly, with additional devastating storms hitting several communities tonight, this may only be the beginning of the support Kansas needs.”

An emergency declaration supplements state and local government efforts for required emergency measures to save lives and to protect property and public health and safety, or to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe through direct federal assistance for emergency protective measures. 

Listed in the request submitted by Kelly were 46 Kansas counties: Allen, Anderson, Barber, Barton, Butler, Chase, Chautauqua, Cherokee, Clark, Clay, Cloud, Coffey, Comanche, Cowley, Crawford, Dickinson, Doniphan, Elk, Franklin, Geary, Greenwood, Harvey, Jefferson, Kingman, Lincoln, Lyon, Marion, McPherson, Meade, Montgomery, Morris, Neosho, Osage, Ottawa, Pawnee, Pottawatomie, Pratt, Reno, Rice, Riley, Rush, Saline, Sumner, Wabaunsee, Wilson, and Woodson.

The request was made under the provisions of Section 401 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 5121-5208 (Stafford Act), and implemented by 44 CFR § 206.35.  Kansas Division of Emergency has also requested assistance through the emergency management assistance compact for an advance team to assist with requests for assistance from other states, liaison officers, geographic information system specialist to assist with the development of mapping products and other technical assistance to assist counties that have sustained impacts and have unmet needs that exceed their resource capabilities.