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11 flood-hit Ill. counties deemed disaster areas

Published: Saturday, May 11, 2013 12:00 p.m. CDT

SPRINGFIELD (AP) — Eleven Illinois counties that suffered damage from last month's flooding have been declared federal disaster areas.

The Illinois Department of Emergency Management said assessments done for 12 days straight since April 29 found nearly 3,700 damaged homes in 14 counties. Severe storms, flooding and winds hit Illinois in April, causing floods in dozens of counties.

Four state teams, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the U.S. Small Business Administration and local officials have taken part in the damage assessment, which is ongoing.

"With 49 Illinois counties across the state impacted by flooding, this process takes time," IEMA Director Jonathon Monken said. "The teams are working as quickly as possible, while still taking time to carefully document the full impact of the flood on people and their communities."

President Barack Obama on Friday approved access to federal aid for recovery efforts to Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Fulton, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, Lake, LaSalle, McHenry and Will counties. The federal assistance could include grant money and loans to pay for repairs, property losses and temporary housing.

Gov. Pat Quinn previously declared 49 Illinois counties as state disaster areas.

State and federal teams also have started meeting with local government officials to document flood-related expenses.

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