Tennessee Governor Bill Lee has taken executive action in response to the severe weather and historic rainfall and flooding from February.
Under an executive order Lee signed Thursday to enable more flood-recovery efforts to begin the process of declaring a federal disaster, the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency will begin joint assessments with the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Record rains over the past few weeks have caused statewide ruin; currently, 83 of the state’s 95 counties have reported weather-related damage.
“As waters recede and we are now able to fully review the extent of flooding damage across our state, I signed an executive order as a key step in working with the federal government for further recovery efforts,” Lee said. “We thank the first responders who are working diligently to keep citizens safe and deliver services.”
The executive order suspends certain laws to enable smoother delivery of healthcare, insurance, relief supplies and personnel, and other recovery components. The order is retroactive to February 6, when the flooding and severe weather began, in order to ensure it covers all relief efforts; it will remain in effect through April 7.