August 21, 2014

Sen. Fischer expects president to grant disaster declaration for Pilger

Sen. Deb Fischer expects President Barack Obama to grant the request for a presidential disaster declaration for Pilger.

“As you know, the governor has started the process by declaring it a disaster area,” Fischer tells Nebraska reporters. “Now, it’s just going through the process. I have not heard any update as of yet from the White House on that.”

Fischer says she has been impressed with how the residents of Pilger have rebounded after an EF-4 tornado took out up to three-quarters of the small, northeast Nebraska community. Fischer says it was hard for her to believe the destruction left in the wake of that tornado when she visited and hard to imagine what the residents went through on June 16th.

“I was also tremendously inspired by their strength and the resolve they expressed to rebuild, recover, and move forward in these very difficult circumstances.”

Fischer says the state has taken the steps necessary for Pilger to receive a presidential disaster declaration. She says the tornado didn’t just wreck houses and businesses, it destroyed much of the town’s infrastructure. She pointed out the tornado took out power poles and electrical lines.

“When it touches the basic infrastructure of communities I would think this is going to be granted,” according to Fischer.

Fischer says she doesn’t know when the disaster declaration might be made, but she does expect it to be made.

“When you see something like that, where it affects homes, but it also affect infrastructure, I would assume the president is going to grant that.”