Grayson County added to Texas Wildfire Disaster Declaration

By: Kylie Dixon Email
By: Kylie Dixon Email

GRAYSON COUNTY, TX-- Last week, Grayson County was added to a list of Texas counties that have been declared a disaster by President Barack Obama.

This was a result of the wildfires that occurred during one of the hottest summers on record in Texas.

According to FEMA, this makes federal funding available to emergency crews in the county and help make up for the extra money spent this summer fighting fires.

Grayson County has been added into the Federal Texas Wildlife Disaster Declaration.

According to FEMA, money used during wildfires that hit Grayson County during August 30th through December 31st last year will be reimbursed.

"That's really good news for our fire departments, who had to preform extraordinary emergency efforts, during that time period. When we all remember that we had such the horrendous drought and fires almost every day," Emergency Management Coordinator, Sarah Somers, said.

FEMA officials spoke with the 16 Grayson County fire departments, about the benefits of the disaster declaration, which was originally started back in September, after the Bastrop County fires.

Volunteers fire fighters have been hit hard, but area fire fighters stick together in good and bad times.

The FEMA money will be a big part of keeping the departments afloat.

"We are still functioning. All the volunteers are still together, we will still respond and we still have mutual aid agreements. If they get into a bind, the paid departments are going to respond them. We are going to make it work. We can't work without the volunteers, and we work every possible way to keep them up and going," Denison Fire Chief, Gordan Weger, said.

Grayson County Emergency Management officials said they hope these state and federal government funds can help these departments keep functioning.

"How many volunteer fire departments chili cook-offs does it take to buy gas? Gas prices are rising. So anything that we can do to help augment and supplement there budgets, is a great great thing.," Somers said.

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