Jun 24, 2012 5:03 PM by Greg Boyce
El Paso County and the City of Colorado Springs have issued joint declarations that the Waldo Canyon Fire is a local disaster. Local emergency declarations are declared to formally activate emergency operations plans, activate mutual assistance agreements and qualify for certain types of Federal and State disaster assistance.
El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa says the declaration, "Heightens the seriousness of the fire and the threat it poses and it opens the gates for additional Federal support and assistance."
El Paso County Commissioner Chair Amy Lathen added, "As the Chair of the Board of County Commissioners, I have signed a Declaration of Local Disaster. I want to thank all the brave men and women on the ground and in the air who are fighting this raging fire. We are coordinating closely with numerous agencies and deeply appreciate the extraordinary efforts being waged here in our Pikes Peak regional home."
Colorado Springs Mayor Steve Bach said, "This is obviously something beyond the resources of any one agency. This declaration is the next step needed for an incident of this size. I commend and thank everyone from all of the agencies helping and ask our citizens to please respect all closures and emergency messages being put out to allow everyone to do their jobs."
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