The Biden administration turned down a request for federal disaster assistance from Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine in the aftermath of the train derailment in the state earlier this month that led to a large release of toxic chemicals.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) told Ohio’s state government that it was not eligible for disaster assistance to help the community recover from the toxic spill, Dan Tierney, a spokesperson for DeWine, told Fox News Digital on Thursday. Tierney explained that FEMA believed the incident didn’t qualify as a traditional disaster, such as a tornado or hurricane, for which it usually provides assistance.
“The DeWine Administration has been in daily contact with FEMA to discuss the need for federal support, however FEMA continues to tell Governor DeWine that Ohio is not eligible for assistance at this time,” DeWine’s office said in a statement earlier in the day. “Governor DeWine will continue working with FEMA to determine what assistance can be provided.”
FEMA said that its team is in constant communication with DeWine’s office, but didn’t comment on the request for federal relief.