Knight Requests Sand Fire Assistance
Congressman Writes Letter to Governor Asking to Redirect State Funds
Representative Steve Knight (CA-25) sent a letter on Monday to Governor Brown asking the state to use funds from an existing block grant to support efforts to repair damages caused by the Sand Fire.
In July, the Sand Fire burned over 40,000 acres and destroyed 19 homes in the Santa Clarita Valley. Knight worked with local, state, and federal officials to secure funding and coordinate efforts to rebuild the damage, but learned that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Small Business Administration (SBA) do not consider the amount of destruction caused by the Sand Fire to be significant enough to qualify for funding through their programs.
“The fire, in addition to the drought, has strained public resources causing tremendous stress particularly on individual families who are now displaced from their community after losing their homes,” Knight states in the letter. “Several months have passed, and many of my constituents are still in need of assistance from the state and federal government in order to rebuild and restore the community”
In his letter to the Governor, Knight states that while he will continue to press the agencies, the state must provide assistance in the meantime. He identifies the best approach as using funds given to California by the federal government through the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), an action that could be authorized by the Governor. Knight concludes the letter by urging Governor Brown to move ahead with the authorization so that Santa Clarita residents can receive necessary assistance before winter begins.
“The Sand Fire was devastating for many in our community, and we must act to ensure they have the assistance they need as quickly as possible,” said Knight.