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Burgum declares flood emergency for North Dakota

The declaration puts the North Dakota National Guard and other state agencies on stand-by in case resources and capabilities are needed to fight flooding in the future.

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Flooding cut off more than 20 county roads in Grand Forks County this spring. Forum News Service file photo
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BISMARCK — North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum declared a statewide flood emergency Friday, April 25, after he says spring flooding caused $7 million in infrastructure damage.

An estimated $5.2 million in damage has come from 14 counties in the eastern and central parts of the state, including Barnes, Emmons, Grand Forks, LaMoure, Logan, McIntosh, Pembina, Ransom, Richland, Sargent, Steele, Stutsman, Traill and Walsh counties. The state Department of Transportation has also estimated nearly $1.8 million in damage to roads.

"Overland flooding and near-record river crests have caused extensive damage to state, county, city and township roads at a time when the state is also responding to the catastrophic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and extremely challenging economic conditions," Burgum said in a press release.

Burgum's declaration puts the North Dakota National Guard and other state agencies on stand-by in case resources and capabilities are needed to fight flooding in the future. The order also activates the State Emergency Operations Plan to help local and tribal officials implement recovery and mitigation measures.

The state Department of Emergency Services will now work with local agencies to formally assess the damage. Then the department will make a recommendation to Burgum on whether to seek a presidential major disaster declaration, which if granted by President Donald Trump, would free up federal aid.

Jeremy Turley is a Bismarck-based reporter for Forum News Service, which provides news coverage to publications owned by Forum Communications Company.
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