News: Clark County, Wis. - Disaster Area (Meaning - 1958)
Contact: Dolores Mohr Kenyon
----Source: Clark County Press (Neillsville, Clark Co., WI.) June 26, 1958
Disaster Area (Meaning - 1958)
When President Eisenhower declined to
designate four counties (including Clark) hit by tornado June 4, as
a major disaster area, exactly what did that mean to the people,
Did it mean that individuals who suffered
loss and damage could not get federal grants?
The Clark County Press tried to find out,
with surprising results.
For instance, it learned for one thing
that there is little understanding even among lawyers, politicians
and newspaper editors of the exact meaning. The common conception
of people, generally, seemed to be that it meant people stricken by
the disaster would be left to pull themselves out of their plight
by themselves, and without help.
For Public Buildings
To be designated a "major disaster" area
by the president would authorize the civil defense agency into
action under Public Law 875. This act provides aid for public
buildings, such as schools, city halls, etc., and for roads and
bridges. It does not provide for help to
In Clark County the designation of a
major disaster area, then, would have been of no financial value to
the individuals hit; nor were public facilities under the meaning
of the law hit.
The lack of such designation, however,
does not prevent the Farmers Home Administration, the Small
Business Administration or others from invoking their own emergency
programs, as laws detailing their functioning provide. The
two mentioned above have declared the tornado area eligible for
emergency disaster aid, and are operating under these
No Outright Grants –(there was not more of the article on my pages of copy).
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