Walker requests FEMA disaster aid for cold winter

Snow from Winter Storm Carol falls in Oshkosh, Feb. 17, 2014. (WLUK)

MADISON - Gov. Scott Walker is requesting a federal disaster declaration for eight counties - including two in the Fox Valley - resulting from the extreme cold winter.

A FEMA disaster declaration would help pay for $11.3 million in damage to public infrastructure in those ccounties, the governor's office says. Damage includes broken water mains and frozen water towers.

The counties included in the initial request are Fond du Lac, Winnebago, Chippewa, Clark, Kenosha, Marathon, Milwaukee and Wood.

Damage from the winter totaled more than $25 million in 69 Wisconsin counties. After those initial reports came in, state emergency management officials submitted a sample group of counties for a review. Counties in that group then supplied extensive data on the depth of frost and documented damage.

After Walker's disaster declaration request, the next step is to show how severe the damage was and the need for assistance because local and state resources were overwhelmed.

If the declaration request is approved, Walker's office says damage assessments would be done in other counties to see if they could be added to the declaration.

Damage to homes and businesses did not meet requirement for FEMA individual aid, the governor's office says.