Gov. Wolf signs disaster proclamation for Pennsylvania
HARRISBURG, PA (WENY) – Governor Tom Wolf has signed a proclamation of disaster emergency for the entire Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in response to the damaged caused by recent flash floods.
Governor Wolf toured areas of Pennsylvania, including Bradford County, on Wednesday. New Albany and Troy in particular have suffered massive damage from the recent rains.
By signing the proclamation, Wolf has allowed the state to seek federal funding for damages and “frees up the red tape that can be associated with procuring necessary supplies and services” during emergency clean-up.
Now, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will determine if the damages meet the federal threshold criteria to receive funding.
It is important to note that the proclamation does not restrict vehicular travel on commonwealth roads, but motorists in areas impacted by flooding are encouraged to allow extra time for travel if roads have not yet been opened.
The proclamation authorizes state agencies to use all available resources and personnel, as necessary, to cope with the magnitude and severity of this emergency situation. The time-consuming bidding and contract procedures, as well as other formalities normally prescribed by law, are waived for the duration of the proclamation.
In addition, the proclamation authorizes the Department of Transportation to waive regulations related to drivers of commercial vehicles in order to ensure the timely movement of commodities, particularly food.
It also provides consumer protections against price gouging by prohibiting companies from charging a price for consumer goods or services that exceeds 20 percent of the average price that the consumer goods or services were sold for in the seven days preceding the effective date of the governor’s proclamation.
“As the clean-up continues, Pennsylvanians need to know that my Administration is doing everything it can to help those suffering from this devastating weather emergency,” Gov. Wolf said.