Washington - U.S. Senators Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) today urged President Obama to approve the State of New Jersey's request for a federal disaster declaration related to the massive snow storms that hit large parts of the state beginning on February 5, 2010. The request covers eight counties that received, in some cases, more than two feet of snow: Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, Ocean, and Salem.

"With millions of dollars in damage caused by this snowstorm, New Jersey is seeking a much-needed disaster declaration to assist in the recovery of these hard-hit areas," wrote the senators. "The devastation endured by New Jersey residents, business owners, and local governments merits a disaster declaration and emergency assistance. This has been a very difficult winter for the state and we urge you to approve this request as soon as possible to ensure the people of New Jersey can begin to rebuild from this storm and mitigate against future disasters."

If approved, the declaration would free up emergency federal funding to reimburse state emergency management agencies and counties for their recovery and rebuilding efforts.

PDF of letter to President Obama: http://menendez.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/20100311ltr_DisasterDeclaration.pdf