Aerial shot Clarks River north

Murray State University President Dr. Bob Jackson obtained this image on the morning of March 2 from his seat aboard a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter as he flew with Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear and others surveying flood damage throughout Calloway County.

FRANKFORT (KT) – Gov. Andy Beshear will ask the federal government to expand its major disaster declaration to include 26 more Kentucky counties.

In April, President Joe Biden issued a declaration after record flooding, severe storms and mudslides earlier this year. FEMA conducted joint damage assessments and subsequently awarded assistance for individuals and homeowners of more than 2,300 impacted homes in Breathitt, Clay, Estill, Floyd, Johnson, Lee, Magoffin, Martin and Powell counties. 

The federal disaster declaration also included public assistance for non-profits and local governments in Boyd, Breathitt, Carter, Casey, Cumberland, Elliott, Floyd, Franklin, Jackson, Johnson, Knott, Knox, Lawrence, Lee, Lincoln, Magoffin, Marion, Martin, Mason, Morgan, Ohio, Pike, Powell, Rockcastle and Wolfe counties. 

This was the largest award for displaced individuals from damages to homes since a massive flooding event impacted the state in May 2010, when more than 4,200 structures were affected.

Beshear is now asking FEMA to conduct damage assessments in 26 other counties that also reported significant damages to residences: Anderson, Bell, Boyd, Calloway, Clark, Fayette, Franklin, Greenup, Jackson, Jessamine, Knott, Laurel, Lawrence, Leslie, Letcher, Lincoln, Madison, Mercer, Morgan, Owsley, Perry, Pulaski, Rockcastle, Todd, Warren and Woodford.

“Kentuckians in these counties are in dire need of individual assistance in the aftermath of this historic flood event that has already totaled more than $72 million in damages,” Beshear stated. “We have taken quick action to request more federal funding for more counties impacted to make sure we help affected people and businesses get back to their lives and livelihoods.”

Residents with questions or additional reports of flood damage should contact their local county emergency management agency. Following the assessment from FEMA, which will take place in the next several weeks, a determination will be made on each county’s eligibility to participate.