This Nov. 30, 2018 file photo shows cases of beer jumbled in a walk-in cooler at Value Liquor after an earthquake in Anchorage. (AP Photo/Dan Joling, File)

This Nov. 30, 2018 file photo shows cases of beer jumbled in a walk-in cooler at Value Liquor after an earthquake in Anchorage. (AP Photo/Dan Joling, File)

Alaska governor seeks disaster declaration after earthquake

JUNEAU — Gov. Mike Dunleavy on Thursday requested a major disaster declaration from the federal government following the Nov. 30 earthquake that rocked Anchorage and other parts of south-central Alaska.

Dunleavy told reporters from Anchorage that the declaration, if approved, would free up money to help the state recover more quickly from the magnitude 7.0 earthquake. In his letter seeking the declaration, he wrote federal assistance is “essential to long-term recovery.”

Initial damage assessments and costs for needs such as temporary housing were around $100 million, according to figures provided by the state.

Dunleavy said he was awaiting word on whether the ongoing partial federal government shutdown would affect the state’s request.

But he said people at the federal level with whom state officials have been communicating are aware of the state’s situation and the government’s “obligation” to provide assistance.

Mike Anderson, a spokesman for Republican Sen. Dan Sullivan, said by email that the state’s congressional delegation was working to minimize any potential disruptions to the Federal Emergency Management Agency during the partial shutdown.

Bryan Fisher, state coordinator in Alaska’s emergency management division, said he did not expect a state disaster fund to run out while awaiting word on the federal disaster declaration request.

Fisher said 7,700 Alaskans had applied for aid through a state assistance program, a number he said is expected to grow. He said the current number of disaster applicants is the largest he’s seen in 25 years on the job.

On the day of the earthquake, President Donald Trump tweeted that Alaskans had been hit by a “big one.”

“Your Federal Government will spare no expense,” the tweet stated.

• By BECKY BOHRER, Associated Press

More in News

Alaska State Troopers logo.
Soldotna man dead after Nikiski collision

The Kenai Spur Highway was closed for around four hours.

Copies of the Peninsula Clarion are photographed on Friday, June 21, 2024. (Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion)
Announcing a new Peninsula Clarion print schedule

Our last Wednesday edition will be delivered June 26.

A bucket of recently caught sockeye salmon rests on the sand while anglers seek to fill it further at the mouth of the Kasilof River on Monday, June 26, 2023, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Dipnetting in Kasilof opens Tuesday

Dipnetting will be allowed at all times until Aug. 7

The Kasilof River is seen from the Kasilof River Recreation Area, July 30, 2019, in Kasilof, Alaska. (Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion)
Fish and Game restricts bait on Kasilof, Ninilchik Rivers

The use of bait on the rivers will begin Friday and extend to July 15 in Ninilchik, July 31 in Kasilof

A man fishes in the Kenai River on July 16, 2018, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Peninsula Clarion/file)
Slow sockeye fishing on Kenai, Russian Rivers

Northern Kenai Fishing Report for June 20

Alaska Department of Fish and Game logo. (Graphic by Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Bag limits doubled for sockeye salmon in Resurrection Bay

The increase is effective from June 21 to July 31

Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion
Girl Scout Troop 210, which includes Caitlyn Eskelin, Emma Hindman, Kadie Newkirk and Lyberty Stockman, present their “Bucket Trees” to a panel of judges in the 34th Annual Caring for the Kenai Competition at Kenai Central High School on Thursday, April 18.
Caring for the Kenai winners receive EPA award

Winning team of the 34th annual Caring for the Kenai was selected for the President’s Environmental Youth Award

Most Read