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Gov. Abbott announces approval of federal emergency declaration for severe winter weather

The entire state of Texas is now under a Winter Storm Warning.

AUSTIN, Texas — Gov. Greg Abbott announced that the White House has issued a Federal Emergency Declaration for Texas in response to the severe winter weather throughout the state.

The governor submitted a request for the declaration on Saturday to assist the state in response efforts related to the storm.

This Federal Emergency Declaration authorizes the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to provide emergency protective measures for mass care and sheltering and Direct Federal Assistance for all 254 counties in Texas.

“I thank President Biden for quickly issuing a Federal Emergency Declaration for Texas as we continue to respond to severe winter weather conditions throughout the state,” Abbott said. “This disaster declaration provides Texas with additional resources and assistance that will help our communities respond to this winter weather."

The entire state of Texas is now under a Winter Storm Warning.

Several cities within the state are in for temperatures not seen for decades, and before it's over, there very well could be plenty of records set.

Freezing weather is already being felt across the state.

Here's a statement from the White House on the declaration:

"Today, President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. declared that an emergency exists in the State of Texas and ordered federal assistance to supplement state and local response efforts due to the emergency conditions resulting from a severe winter storm beginning on February 11, 2021, and continuing.

"The President's action authorizes the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), to coordinate all disaster relief efforts which have the purpose of alleviating the hardship and suffering caused by the emergency on the local population, and to provide appropriate assistance for required emergency measures, authorized under Title V of the Stafford Act, to save lives and to protect property and public health and safety, and to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe in all 254 Texas counties.

"Specifically, FEMA is authorized to identify, mobilize, and provide at its discretion, equipment and resources necessary to alleviate the impacts of the emergency. Emergency protective measures for mass care and sheltering and direct federal assistance will be provided at 75 percent federal funding.

"Robert J. Fenton, Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Department of Homeland Security, named Jerry S. Thomas as the Federal Coordinating Officer for federal recovery operations in the affected areas."