President Obama signs disaster declaration for Oglala Sioux Tribe

The Pine Ridge Reservation went through severe storms throughout the month of May. Tribal members saw snowfall late as May 20. Photo from Lakota Country Times / Facebook

President Barack Obama on Friday issued a disaster declaration for the Oglala Sioux Tribe after the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota suffered damage from severe storms.

The storms occurred from May 8 through May 25. The reservation saw damage from high winds, snow storms and from subsequent flooding.

The declaration clears the way for the tribe to receive federal funding. Tribal members can receive rental assistance for temporary housing, grants for home repairs and loans to cover uninsured property losses, according to the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

In January 2013, Congress amended the Stafford Act to recognize tribal sovereignty. Under H.R.152, tribes can receive disaster funds directly from the federal government rather than going through states.

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