Maryland congressional delegation calls on Trump to approve disaster declaration for Ellicott City flood

Maryland's representatives in Congress called on President Donald J. Trump to declare a disaster in the May flooding that devastated Ellicott City and parts of Baltimore and Baltimore County.

A disaster declaration would unlock money for rebuilding and repairs. Gov. Larry Hogan made a similar request last week.

“We are writing to express our strong support for Maryland Governor Larry Hogan’s request for the declaration of a major disaster,” the state’s senators and representatives wrote.

“This event was of such severity and magnitude that effective recovery is beyond the capabilities of the State of Maryland and Howard County, Baltimore County, and Baltimore City alone.”

Floods roared through Ellicott City’s historic downtown on May 27, destroying property and sweeping away a National Guardsman who was trying to help a local woman.

Parts of Baltimore County and Baltimore City were also submerged by the heavy rains.

The damage to infrastructure is estimated at $10.5 million in Howard County; $8.6 million in Baltimore County and $3 million in Baltimore.

Those numbers are well above the thresholds for triggering federal help, the lawmakers wrote.

“We therefore urge you to expeditiously review Governor Hogan’s request,” they wrote.

The White House referred questions to the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which said the request was “under active review.”

The FEMA approved a disaster declaration last week for rain, mudslides and flooding in Maryland’s Frederick and Washington counties earlier in May.

The May 27 flood was the second to devastate Ellicott City in less than two years. The community was still recovering from a July 2016 flood that caused millions of dollars in damage and killed two.

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