FEMA Authorizes Funds for Nev. Fire

June 27, 2005

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has authorized the use of federal funds to help Nevada fight the Good Springs fire burning in Clark County west of Las Vegas.

Michael Brown, under secretary of Homeland Security for Emergency Preparedness and Response, said the state’s request for federal fire management assistance was approved after it was confirmed that the fire burned past 60 evacuated homes in Mt. Potosi and threatened an additional 100 homes and three commercial properties in Mountain Springs. A Boy Scout camp and a church camp have been evacuated. Smoke is affecting the air quality in Las Vegas. The fire, which started June 22 by lightning bolt, had consumed more than 18,500 acres at the time of the request. The request was approved by FEMA on June 24.

“This declaration is the first step towards enabling the state and local governments to apply for financial help,” said Brown. “We are committed to getting our firefighters the funds they need to extinguish dangerous fires that threaten lives and property.”

The authorization makes FEMA funding available to pay 75 percent of the state’s eligible firefighting costs under an approved grant for managing, mitigating and controlling designated fires.

Federal fire management assistance is provided through the President’s Disaster Relief Fund and made available by FEMA to assist in fighting fires that threaten to cause a major disaster. Eligible state firefighting costs covered by the aid must first meet a minimum threshold for costs before assistance is provided.

Eligible costs covered by the aid can include expenses for field camps; equipment use, repair and replacement; tools, materials and supplies; and mobilization and demobilization activities.

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