President Obama declares major disaster in Tennessee, orders federal aid

(AP Photo)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – President Barack Obama has declared that a major disaster occurred in Tennessee and ordered federal aid to help the state.

The deceleration, which was made Thursday, will assist with recovery efforts from the wildfires in Sevier County.

PHOTOS: Wildfires in East Tennessee

The disaster relief will give federal funding for fire victims, including grants for temporary housing and home repairs, low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses, and other programs to help individuals and business owners recover.

Federal funding will also be available to state and eligible local governments and certain private nonprofit organizations on a cost-sharing basis. This will be for emergency work in Sevier County.

FEMA says they are still assessing the damage and more assistance could come once it’s completed.

Gov. Bill Haslam, who requested federal relief on Dec. 9, released the following statement Thursday:

This deadly wildfire required a coordinated response from many individuals and organizations. The outpouring of care, relief, and support from around the world for Sevier County and its people has been extraordinary. This assistance from the federal government will help relieve some of the financial burden of this disaster on Tennesseans and Sevier County.”

Click here for complete coverage of the Sevier County wildfire.