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President Biden approves disaster declaration for Monterey, Santa Cruz counties

PIX Now -- Monday evening headlines from the KPIX newsroom
PIX Now -- Monday evening headlines from the KPIX newsroom 11:06

WASHINGTON, D.C. – President Joe Biden on Monday issued a major disaster declaration in multiple California counties, his office announced. 

Biden ordered federal aid to supplement state, tribal and local recovery efforts from the atmospheric rivers and other powerful storms that began Feb. 21. 

Funding is now available for Monterey, Kern, Mariposa, San Benito, Santa Cruz, Tulare and Tuolumne counties, the president's office said. 

Luis Alejo, chair of the Monterey County Board of Supervisors, praised the move on Twitter on Monday evening. 

"I thank President Joe Biden for finally signing the Major Disaster Declaration that will now deploy FEMA workers and assistance for Pajaro families," he tweeted. 

Assistance can include grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses and other programs to help people and businesses affected by the storms.

"Federal funding also is available to state, tribal, and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis for emergency work and the repair or replacement of facilities damaged by the severe winter storms, straight-line winds, flooding, landslides, and mudslides in the counties of Calaveras, Los Angeles, Monterey, and Tulare," said the president's office. 

"The people of Pajaro do so much to put food on the tables of millions of Americans," said Alejo in his tweet. "They are now needing the support and assistance of our federal and state agencies to recover from these devastating floods. Many have lost so much, and must be supported to recover from this extreme hardship. We are relieved that help is on its way!"

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