Inslee seeks major disaster declaration for deadly mudslide

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - Washington Gov. Jay Inslee is asking President Barack Obama for a major disaster declaration in Snohomish County to make programs available to help individuals, households and businesses impacted by the massive Oso landslide on March 22.

The request made Monday asks for access to disaster housing, disaster grants, disaster-related unemployment insurance and crisis counseling programs for those in Snohomish County and to the Stillaguamish, Sauk-Suiattle and Tulalip Indian tribes.

Approximately 30 families need the assistance with temporary and long-term housing, along with personal and household goods, Inslee says in his letter. Based on Snohomish County Assessors data, the estimated losses amount to nearly $10 million, with nearly $7 million in structure costs and more than $3 million in contents costs.

Inslee also seeks federal help with funeral expenses for up to 48 people and mental health care programs for survivors, volunteers, community members and first responders.

The governor also requested the U.S. Small Business Administration to make its disaster loan program available.

Last week a federal emergency declaration was approved, which provided a federal disaster team and specialized personnel including the Federal Emergency Management Agency to the slide area. The declaration also allowed for some federal reimbursement for costs related to emergency protective measures and response.