White House approves major disaster declaration for California wildfire response

SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA - AUGUST 16: California Gov. Gavin Newsom looks on during a news conference with California attorney General Xavier Becerra at the California State Capitol on August 16, 2019 in Sacramento, California. California attorney gener

Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Saturday that the White House has approved California's request for a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration to assist state resources with wildfires buring in Lake, Napa, San Mateo, Santa Cruz, Solano, Sonoma and Yolo counties.

“Thank you to the President for your partnership and granting this urgent Major Disaster Declaration. California is battling two of the largest fires in our history and has seen nearly 600 new fires in the last week caused by dry lightning strikes. These are unprecedented times and conditions, but California is strong – we will get through this,” said Newsom.


The declaration will help residents who have been impacted by the fires with support, including crisis counseling, housing and unemployment assistance and legal services.

It also provides federal assistance to help state, tribal and local governments fund emergency response, recovery and protective measures.


Newsom had already delcared a statewide emergency due to the widespread wildfires and severe weather conditions.