NASHVILLE —Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee signed an executive order enabling further recovery efforts and beginning the process for declaring a federal disaster after record rains in February caused statewide 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,” said Lee. “We thank the first responders who are working diligently to keep citizens safe and deliver services.”
Currently, 83 counties have reported damage. The Department of Agriculture, Department of Transportation and the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) have been coordinating with local authorities to collect the necessary data for further recovery efforts.
The executive order suspends certain laws to enable smoother delivery of health care, insurance, relief supplies and personnel, and other recovery components. The order is retroactively effective Feb. 6, when the flooding and severe weather began, to ensure that it covers all relief efforts, and it will remain in effect through April 7.
The order will also help facilitate the repair of the more than 232 locations on Tennessee state and federal highways damaged by the flooding, with more areas likely to be identified as floodwaters recede.
This will also begin the process of engaging the federal government for funding and other resources.