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San Diego Mayor Declares State of Emergency in Aftermath of Storms

Cars drive through flooding at College and University avenues, Jan. 20, 2017.

Photo by Claire Trageser

Above: Cars drive through flooding at College and University avenues, Jan. 20, 2017.

Damage and other costs to the city of San Diego from last month's storms could top $5 million, according to documents made available Friday.

City officials said the rains caused widespread flooding, wind damage and debris flows throughout the area that led authorities to engage in swiftwater rescue operations, traffic control, debris removal, clearing and repairing of storm drains, and tree and mud removal.

Photo by KPBS Staff

A fallen eucalyptus tree blocks Northside Drive at Friars Road in Mission Valley, Jan. 27, 2017.

The significant emergency response and recovery activities by municipal officials led Mayor Kevin Faulconer to issue a local emergency proclamation, which is scheduled to be ratified by the City Council next week.

While a state of emergency proclamation has already been declared at the state level by Gov. Jerry Brown, approval of a local proclamation is necessary to secure state disaster assistance.

“We believe we have a strong case in applying for and receiving emergency aid from the state,” said John Valencia, City of San Diego Office of Homeland Security Executive Director. “We estimate that close to $5 million may be recouped following the severe storms that pounded our City last month.”

RELATED: Severe Thunderstorm Topples Trees, Floods Roadways

An initial damage estimate ranges from $4.6 million to $5.1 million, and is based on preliminary reports, so the total could wind up being more or less. State grants would offset 75 percent of city costs.

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