KENTUCKY (WOWK) – President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden visited parts of eastern Kentucky hit by the devastating flooding that tore through several counties between July 26 and July 28 on Monday, Aug. 8.
The Bidens joined Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear, Kentucky First Lady Britainy Beshear, Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman and Second Gentleman Chris O’Bryan to visit families impacted by the flooding and analyze FEMA efforts at the State Disaster Recovery Center.
The president and the governor were briefed on the ongoing response efforts this afternoon, and then Biden and Beshear also delivered remarks during their neighborhood tour.
“I promise, we are staying,” said President Biden. “The federal government, along with the state and county and the city, we are staying until everybody is back to where they were.”
Biden and Beshear witnessed the devastation first hand and spoke with many of the families who were hit the hardest.
“Seeing the devastation first hand is heartbreaking,” said Governor Beshear. “It’s traumatic just to witness, much less for these family and these children to live through.”
On Saturday, President Joe Biden made additional federal disaster assistance available to southeastern Kentuckians affected by severe flooding.
Under the President’s order, federal funding was made available for Public Assistance and Hazard Mitigation at 75% of the total eligible costs. Federal funds for debris removal and emergency protective measures, including direct federal assistance, have been raised to 100% of the total eligible costs for a 30-day period within the first 120 days of the order.
The areas that will benefit from the President’s order include Clay, Floyd, Knott, Martin, Owsley, Perry and Pike counties.
As of Friday, 37 Kentuckians have died in the flooding and authorities were still searching for two people out of Breathitt County.
This morning, Kentucky Power is reporting 538 customers without power, down from the more than 23,000 reported immediately after the storms and flooding.