Trump administration reverses course, grants California's request for federal aid after wildfires

Governor Newsom requested the federal government assist in damages from the conflagrations.

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Gavin Newsom, Donald Trump
President Trump, California Gov. Gavin Newsom, Beale AFB, Nov. 17, 2018
(Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images)
Updated: October 16, 2020 - 5:24pm

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The Trump administration reversed course on Friday and granted a request by California for federal aid to help with wildfire damage in the state over the past several months.

Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom had requested a major presidential disaster declaration in a Sept. 28 letter to President Trump to help pay for the cleanup and rebuilding of areas damaged in six separate wildfires.

Under the declaration requested, the federal government would have paid for recovery expenses, and Federal Emergency Management programs would have become available to the state.

The Trump administration initially denied the request, but Newsom on Friday afternoon said after a personal phone call with Trump that the administration granted the emergency funding. 

"Grateful for his quick response," Newsom wrote in a tweet announcing the decision. 

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