ATLANTA, GA- Governor Nathan Deal announced Tuesday that the state’s first request for federal aid in Albany was approved. He also said that he was hopeful that a second request for help in the wake of the second round of storms would get the same treatment.

Those first round of storms hit Albany on January 2, 2017. The hurricane-force winds left 32-square miles of debris and more than 30,000 people without power for days. Gov. Deal said now that federal help for that storm has been approved, movement on the most recent storms should move more quickly.

“It’s good to have that first approval out of the way because it segregates it as having specific damage that has already been assessed and of course now with that approval has been recognized at a federal level,” he said. “We’re doing everything we can to try to get them to expedite approval of that as well.”

Killer storms claimed the lives of fifteen people and injured eighty others in south Georgia on January 22. The storms spawned a series of tornadoes at that time.

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