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Gov. Cox declares state of emergency due to flooding and flood risks

SALT LAKE CITY (April 18, 2023) – Utah Gov. Spencer J. Cox has declared a state of emergency due to flooding and the resulting avalanches, landslides, rockslides, mudslides, and other dangerous conditions the state is experiencing.

“We’re incredibly grateful for the moisture we’ve received this winter, but the extra rain and hefty snowpack present increasing flood risks as the snow melts,” Gov. Cox said. “By declaring a state of emergency, the state will be better able to tap into reserve funds to support flood response and mitigation efforts. In short, we’ll be better prepared for what lies ahead this spring.”

During the 2023 General Legislative Session, legislators appropriated $5 million for emergency management flood mitigation. However, those funds are already depleted. Executive Order 2023-05 will allow the state to tap into the State Disaster Recovery Restricted Account for additional resources. It also permits the state to seek aid from both the federal government as well as other states.

So far, the Utah Division of Emergency Management has activated the State Emergency Response Team and has deployed resources, including more than 1 million sandbags as of April 7, 2023, to help communities prepare for flooding. In addition, crews from the Division of Forestry, Fire and State Lands are available to assist local governments and volunteers with filling sandbags, removing debris and operating heavy equipment.

The state of emergency will remain in effect for the next 30 days, or longer if the Legislature extends it.

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Media Contact

Jennifer Napier-Pearce
Office of the Governor
(801) 631-0707, jnp@utah.gov