Pushing for More Assistance to East Texas

As people all over east Texas are doing their best trying to recover from Hurricane Ike, local, state, and federal leaders and I are continuing to seek more aid for impacted areas.

As people all over east Texas are doing their best trying to recover from Hurricane Ike, local, state, and federal leaders and I are continuing to seek more aid for impacted areas. I personally saw the destruction experienced in east Texas as I was all over the district during the storm, helping anywhere assistance was needed. Some of our counties, such as Angelina, Nacogdoches, Sabine, and San Augustine, have already been declared eligible for Public and Individual Assistance from FEMA, for which we are extremely grateful and encourage residents to apply.

However, I feel strongly that additional counties should have been included in the disaster declaration, as many individual households and businesses suffered significant damage. In order for these counties to receive this assistance, Governor Perry must declare them to be in a state of disaster, followed by a declaration made by President Bush. Earlier this week I sent a letter to Governor Perry, the text of which has been included below, urging him to include the rest of our counties in the disaster declaration so that we may get them the assistance they desperately need. It is important to note that on September 12, Governor Perry amended his original disaster declaration to include Rusk County, which now awaits a declaration by President Bush. Therefore, my letter mentions the remaining eight counties who still need to be included.

If you are currently ineligible for Individual Assistance through FEMA because you are a resident of Rusk, Shelby, Gregg, Panola, Harrison, Smith, Marion, Upshur, or Cass county, please be sure to document the damage to your home and property. We are diligently working to see that these declarations are expanded to your counties so that you may get the aid you need, and this documentation will be of vital importance to your FEMA claim. If you are a resident of Angelina, Nacogdoches, Sabine, or San Augustine county, please make sure you register with FEMA through the instructions that can be found on my website here. If you have followed all the instructions and incur any problems with your FEMA application, please contact my office for help.

                                                   With Kindest Regards,


Dear Governor Perry,

Thank you for your continued support of the State of Texas during the devastation of Hurricane Ike. As I traveled all throughout east Texas seeking to give any kind of relief to my constituents during and after the storm, I saw that the counties in my Congressional district suffered significant damage. Many of these counties are not included on President Bush's disaster declaration, though they should be. Therefore, in addition to the other eleven counties that you have requested the President add to the Major Disaster Declaration, I urge you to also seek Individual and Public Assistance for the deserving east Texas counties of Shelby, Gregg, Panola, Harrison, Smith, Marion, Upshur, and Cass.

These counties are greatly in need of this crucial aid. I strongly urge you to visit my district and observe the damage caused by Hurricane Ike. Their dire need for federal assistance is apparent as the destruction was significant all throughout the First District

It is my hope that you will give every possible consideration to include these eight additional counties. Thank you in advance for your consideration of this matter. I look forward to our continued correspondence.

With kindest regards, I am

Hon. Louie Gohmert