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McDonnell released a statement May 8 outlining the agency's decision to deny his request for relief. A series of tornadoes and other strong storms that passed through the region April 28 left 10 people dead in Virginia, as well as significant damage to homes and some public facilities.
McDonnell said the state is "very disappointed" in FEMA's decision, according to his statement. Local officials in southwest Virginia, which was hit hard in late April by tornadoes, say they are disappointed with FEMA's decision.
The agency said over the weekend the damage was not severe enough to qualify for federal assistance. More than two dozen tornadoes hit Virginia on that day last month, destroying more than 200 homes and damaging more than a thousand others.
A spokesperson for Virginia's Department of Emergency Services says while federal aid wouldn't have covered all of the damage, officials were expecting FEMA assistance. Virginia requested federal disaster assistance for three counties: Halifax, Pulaski and Washington.