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President Biden approves emergency declaration for Oklahoma following extreme winter weather

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Breea Clark

Norman Mayor Breea Clark reads a proclamation at the George Floyd candlelight memorial June 11, 2020.

President Joseph Biden approved an emergency declaration for Oklahoma on Feb. 18, establishing federal assistance to aid the state amid the effects of extreme weather. 

The declaration offers “federal assistance to supplement state, tribal, and local response efforts due to the emergency conditions” resulting from the snow storm.

Mayor Breea Clark said in an email Norman needs assistance, as it has been dealing with “crisis after crisis.”

“First we dealt with snow removal and rolling power outages, and now we are dealing with issues at our water treatment plant which will affect our water supply,” Clark said. “Any support we can get from the state and federal government will be greatly appreciated and can’t come soon enough.”

Norman City Manager Darrel Pyle said in an email the city will execute a similar declaration of a local weather emergency. He said this makes the city eligible to receive federal reimbursement for costs incurred responding to the emergency.  

“To date, the dollar value of our response is relatively small. Mostly overtime for crews working 12 hour shifts, 24 hours a day for the week.” Pyle said in the email. “After we get the balance of the streets cleared and the snow has melted, we will assess the total impact and prepare a reimbursement request for (submission) to (Federal Emergency Management Agency).” 

Pyle said more information regarding the snowstorm’s impact on the city’s budget will be available next week. 

Gabriela Tumani is an international student from Brazil. She is majoring in journalism with a minor in international studies and works as a junior news reporter for The Daily.

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