Burgum asks for federal help in dealing with storm damage

BISMARCK (AP) — Gov. Doug Burgum has requested federal help for counties dealing with recent storms that caused more than $2 million in damage to roads and other infrastructure.

The storms during the second week of June produced tornadoes and up to baseball-sized hail, caused flooding and included damaging winds of up to 93 mph.

Because North Dakota is experiencing one of the worst droughts on record, the torrential rain that caused flooding was only made worse because dried out topsoil was nearly impermeable.

Burgum is asking that the Federal Emergency Management Agency issued a major disaster declaration for eight counties: Burke, Divide, Emmons, Grant, Kidder, LaMoure, Sioux and Williams.

If granted, a presidential declaration would unlock FEMA public assistance to help cities, counties and townships pay for the costs of repairing roads and other infrastructure.

“These unrelenting storms caused extensive damage to homes and businesses, damaged roads and bridges, and snapped power poles and downed power lines, cutting off service to several communities,” Burgum said.

The governor also on Monday issued an executive order mobilizing state resources to help local and tribal officials.