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Congressman Raul Ruiz

Representing the 36th District of California

Dr. Ruiz Sends Letter to the President Urging Federal Aid for Local Communities Impacted by the Valentine’s Day Flood

April 15, 2019
Press Release
The letter calls on President Trump to use federal disaster relief funds to help residents and business-owners overcome the flooding damage

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, Representative Raul Ruiz, M.D. (D-Palm Desert) sent a letter to President Donald Trump urging him to devote federal funding to help local communities recover from the Valentine’s Day flood. The letter comes after Governor Gavin Newsom sent a letter to President Trump over the weekend requesting a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration for communities across California impacted by February’s flooding.

“I urge President Trump to issue a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration in order to help hundreds of families and local businesses qualify for federal resources and get back on their feet,” said Dr. Ruiz. “Our communities hurt by the Valentine’s Day floods need help to fix roads and property. I have monitored the damage and communicated our local needs to Governor Newsom and applaud his diligent response and request to the President. We must support the people who, due to road damage, endure long drives to medical appointments, loss of customers to their small business, and longer commutes to work. I will continue to track progress and advocate to bring home federal resources to fix our roads and businesses.”



On April 13, Governor Gavin Newsom requested Presidential Major Disaster Declarations to bolster ongoing state and local recovery efforts following severe February storms that caused widespread flooding, mudslides, and damage to critical infrastructure across California.

If granted, the Presidential Major Disaster Declarations would help state, tribal, and local governments with recovery projects including the repair and replacement of disaster-damaged facilities and infrastructure, such as roads, bridges and utilities.

You can read the full text of the Congressman’s letter to the President below.



April 15, 2019


President Donald Trump

The White House

1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW

Washington, D.C. 20500


Dear Mr. President,

I am writing in support of Governor Gavin Newsom’s request for a Major Disaster Declaration for California communities impacted by the severe winter storms that occurred in February. As the Representative of California 36th Congressional district, I urge you to swiftly provide federal aid to the affected communities, including those I represent in Riverside County and the San Jacinto Mountains.

The major weather event that occurred in mid-February brought heavy winds and rains that caused intense flooding, mudslides, and damaged critical infrastructure including sewage systems and roadways. State Routes 243 and 74, near the town of Idyllwild in the San Jacinto Mountains, were so severely damaged that repairs are estimated to take up to two months to complete, stranding businesses and residents in the area.

I have heard from my constituents about the personal and economic toll these damages have taken on our communities. Road closures have led some residents to struggle to reach their medical appointments, and local economies have suffered due to declines in tourism. Federal aid is essential to helping these communities recover and local residents get back on their feet.

Thank you for your consideration, and I urge you to grant this disaster request as soon as possible. I look forward to working with you to ensure that the individuals affected by these storms have the necessary resources to repair their communities and local infrastructure.





Raul Ruiz, M.D.

Member of Congress