• President Trump declares federal state of emergency in Georgia

    By: Tamar Hallerman, The Atlanta Journal-Constituion

    Updated:

    ATLANTA - President Donald Trump declared a federal state of emergency in Georgia, the White House said Thursday, as Hurricane Michael left a trail of destruction across the state. 

    The action allows Georgia to tap into a slate of federal resources, including money, debris removal and protective measures aimed at supplementing state and local efforts.

    Specifically, Trump’s designation authorizes the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Department of Homeland Security to  coordinate disaster relief efforts and provide equipment and resources to the region.

    We have a team of reporters and photographers spread out across Florida and Georgia as Hurricane Michael clean-up begins. WATCH Channel 2 Action News at Noon for LIVE Team 2 Coverage.

    Trump’s action came after Gov. Deal declared a state of emergency covering 92 counties in central and southern Georgia, including Augusta, Macon, Savannah and Columbus.

    He later expanded the designation to include an additional 16 counties and activated 1,500 Georgia National Guard troops. 

    The president is expected to visit the state next week to survey damage from the storm. 


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    On Wednesday, all 16 members of Georgia’s congressional delegation urged the president to expedite emergency resources to the state. 

    “Given the potential catastrophic impact that this hurricane may have on Georgia, the state and federal government must work together in order to help reduce the potential loss of life and destruction of property,” the 12 Republicans and four Democrats wrote in a letter to Trump. 

    Michael was downgraded to a tropical storm as it reached central Georgia early Thursday, but it still left a trail of destruction in its wake. 

    An 11-year-old girl died in Southwest Georgia, and utility crews are working to restore power to more than 300,000 customers. 

    Michael reached Georgia Wednesday as a Category 3 hurricane, the first storm of that strength to directly hit the state in more than a century, according to Severe Weather Team 2 Meteorologist Brad Nitz

    Vice President Mike Pence had been scheduled to visit Atlanta on Thursday but canceled his trip due to the storm. 

    This article was written by Tamar Hallerman, The Atlanta Journal-Constituion.

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