Trump approves disaster declaration in Colorado due to wildfires

Posted at 10:14 PM, Jan 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-16 15:11:36-05

DENVER — President Donald Trump declared a major disaster exists in Colorado in the areas affected by wildfires from Sept. 6 to Nov. 5, 2020.

The president ordered federal assistance to supplement recovery efforts. That includes federal funding to state, tribal and eligible local governments, as well as certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work and the repair or replacement of facilities damaged by the wildfires in Grand and Larimer counties.

Federal funding is also available on a cost-sharing basis for hazard mitigation measures statewide.

This will go to help areas affected by the East Troublesome Fire and the Cameron Peak Fire, the two largest wildfires in the state's history.

Cumulatively more than 800 structures were lost as a result of both fires and a newly released report from the Larimer County Assessor's Office indicated a market loss of more than $6 million for the Cameron Peak Fire alone.

READ MORE: How you can help victims of Colorado's wildfires

Gov. Jared Polis made the request for the relief Dec. 23, 2020.

“This is welcomed relief from the federal government at a time when Coloradans and our communities impacted by these devastating wildfires need it,” Governor Polis. said “I’m thankful to Colorado’s federal delegation including Congressman Neguse, first responders, local partners for their collaboration and efforts to respond to these wildfires and to secure these resources and look forward to building back stronger than before.”

Congressman Joe Neguse led a letter of support, signed by the bipartisan delegation, urging swift adoption of Polis’s request for the declaration.

“Devastating wildfires have occurred across our state this wildfire season, forcing evacuations, threatening air and water quality, and destroying homes and businesses. Given the historic nature of these fires and their devastating impact on our communities, this disaster declaration is crucial to ensure that Coloradans have access to the resources they need to respond and recover quickly,” Neguse said. "I will continue to work with our firefighters, local and state emergency response officials to ensure our communities are equipped to recover and that we doing all we can to reduce the threat of wildfires in the future.”

The request for assistance to Boulder County due to the Calwood Fire and individual assistance for all counties is still being reviewed, according to Polis' office.