Obama Declares Disaster for Va. Storm Damage

President Barack Obama has granted Virginia's request for federal disaster aid to help pay for the costs of responding to recent severe storms.

The thunderstorms and winds from June 29 to July 1 killed 15 people and left 1.3 million utility customers without power.

Obama declared a major disaster Friday in 47 counties and 15 cities. The declaration makes federal funding available on a cost-sharing basis to state and local governments and certain nonprofit organizations.

The federal aid can be used to pay for emergency work and repairing or replacing facilities damaged by the storms.

Gov. Bob McDonnell said this week that responding to the storms cost the state and local governments an estimated $27.5 million. That doesn't include damage to private property.

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