Dana Hertneky, News 9
PIEDMONT, Oklahoma -- The federal government is stepping up to help the victims of the May 24th tornadoes.
Monday President Obama signed a federal disaster declaration for Canadian, Deleware, Grady, Kingfisher, Logan, and McClain counties.
The declaration will release FEMA funds.
The declaration is what many folks have been waiting for. Emergency Management officials say they don't know what took the federal government so long to declare a disaster, but they're glad they finally did.
When the tornado tore through Mark Browns Pedimont neighborhood he was prepared and headed for his storm shelter.
"It didn't look like a tornado, but it was so we got in and locked the door." said Brown.
What he wasn't prepared for was the massive clean up and expenses associated with the aftermath.
Just hiring a contractor to clean up his property could cost thousands more then his insurance will pay for.
"If FEMA would help with the costs of cleanup that would help a lot," said Brown.
FEMA will provide grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low cost loans for uninsured losses, bereavement and medical losses, as a number of other programs.
The state Emergency management office is encouraging who was effected by the storms to apply and see what you may qualify for.
Individuals and businesses may apply for assistance on line at http://www.disasterassistance.gov/ or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA.
See Full Coverage Of Oklahoma Tornado Outbreak