HARTFORD, Conn — More help is on the way to help with the aftermath of Tropical Storm Isaias.
Governor Ned Lamont announced Friday morning that he was notified by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) that the state has received the approval of a presidential emergency declaration in response to damage from Tropical Storm Isaias.
Gov. Lamont said late Thursday night, he spoke via telephone with President Donald Trump to explain the reasons why the state needed the approval and urged the president to expedite the process.
The storm had left over 700,000 people without power. Some won't see their power fully restored until early next week.
With the approval of an emergency declaration, the state will request direct federal assistance to supplement the ongoing state and local efforts to protect public health and safety during the crisis, including certain equipment and other resources.
In a press conference in Danbury Friday afternoon, Gov. Lamont said generators were being shipped in. He cited 2011 as a lesson learned that after 3-4 days with a generator going, they will stop working and institutions will suffer like nursing homes, government offices, and things for the public health like wastewater filtrations.
“Approval of this declaration is very much appreciated as hundreds of thousands in our state remain without power days after the storm made landfall in Connecticut,” Governor Lamont said. “We’re continuing to work with our federal and local counterparts to assess the damage and may seek additional federal support during the response, recovery, and rebuilding process.”
Gov. Lamont spoke at a news conference in Westport with the First Selectman following his Danbury stop Friday afternoon. He talked about the Eversource response to the power outage restoration, saying we need to hope for the best and plan for the worst. And that’s not what Eversource has done.
“I’m going to hold their feet to the fire every day until this is done.”
The Lamont administration, through the Connecticut Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP), is in the process of conducting the necessary damage assessments to determine whether the state meets the thresholds to seek a major disaster declaration from the federal government.
That declaration would enable the state and its municipalities to receive additional federal assistance beyond that authorized by today’s emergency declaration. The administration said they anticipate having more information on that process within the next several days.
Governor Lamont declared a state of emergency in response to Tropical Storm Isaias on Wednesday morning.