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Bryant Calls Special Legislative Session to Fund Tornado Relief

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Chip Ward

JACKSON, Miss. – Governor Phil Bryant announced Tuesday his plans to call lawmakers into a Special Legislative Session this Thursday at 1 p.m. in order to make funds available for tornado relief efforts. He is asking lawmakers to provide the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency with $20 million so they can pay for disaster response and recovery costs.

It is estimated that last week’s tornado outbreak dealt the state $13.5 million in damages.

Following last week’s storms, Itawamba, Lee, Lowndes, Madison, Rankin, Wayne and Winston counties were declared eligible for FEMA’s Individual Assistance program and reimbursement assistance with eligible costs for emergency response efforts and debris removal through FEMA’s Public Assistance program. Today, Individual Assistance was also extended to Jones, Leake, Montgomery, Simpson and Warren counties. The state is also seeking expanded Public Assistance aid.

“Residents across Mississippi are suffering as a result of last week’s deadly tornadoes, and it is imperative that we provide the necessary resources for response and recovery,” Gov. Phil Bryant said. “I am hopeful the Legislature will appropriately address the funding needs for this most recent disaster and will provide a sustainable method for satisfying responsibilities the state has for ongoing work from other disasters. We must also be prepared for the possibility of additional emergencies, particularly as we near the start of hurricane season.”

According to the National Weather Service 23 tornadoes blew across Mississippi, killing 14 in the state, many of them in Winston County.

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