Capitol Alert

President Donald Trump declares disaster for California because of January storms

President Donald Trump on Thursday declared a major disaster for California because of damage caused by heavy rains that hit the state from Jan. 18 to Jan. 23, making available federal assistance to state and local agencies as well as some nonprofit groups.

Thursday’s announcement is the third presidential declaration received by the state this winter. Trump declared a presidential emergency during last month’s crisis at Oroville Dam and issued a disaster declaration for damage caused by heavy rains Jan. 3 through Jan. 12.

Gov. Jerry Brown had requested the latest declaration in a letter to Trump earlier this month. He said the atmospheric river of storms that hit the state in mid-January caused flooding, breached levees, cut power to an estimated 55,000 homes and businesses, and contributed to six deaths.

Thursday’s declaration covers El Dorado, Kern, Los Angeles, Mendocino, Napa, Orange, Riverside, Sacramento, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, San Mateo, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, Trinity, Tuolumne, and Yolo. Federal money also is available for statewide hazard mitigation efforts.

Related stories from Sacramento Bee