President Biden Approves Major Disaster Declaration for Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties

By the Office of Rep. Salud Carbajal

[Tuesday night], President Joe Biden approved an amendment to his major disaster declaration to include San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties, a change pushed by Congressman Salud Carbajal (CA-24) over the past week in the aftermath of heavy storms and flooding across the Central Coast.

President Biden’s approval of individual and public assistance through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) will allow Central Coast residents and business owners to apply directly for relief, as well as support repair and replacement work being done by local governments and emergency managers in both counties.

“I am grateful to President Biden and FEMA leadership for hearing the stories that I and others have shared from the Central Coast this past week and recognizing the need for direct federal assistance to help not only our municipal repair crews, but also the individual residents and business owners that have had livelihoods wrecked by this month’s storms,” said Congressman Carbajal. “As I have traveled to flood-damaged communities up and down our coast these past few days, I have promised to people whose homes and stores were flooded with mud and debris that I would fight to get the assistance they needed. And I know this declaration is the next step in my keeping that promise to them. I encourage anyone affected by floods and stormwater in these counties to go to to learn more.”

Congressman Carbajal had been publicly and privately lobbying the Biden Administration to approve a major disaster declaration for the portions of the Central Coast that he represents: San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Ventura counties.

He wrote to President Biden with Congressman Jimmy Panetta (CA-19) and met with FEMA officials today to discuss how FEMA resources were being used to help respond to flood and storm damage across the region.

The original federal major disaster declaration was approved last week for Merced, Sacramento, and Santa Cruz Counties. The amendment approved by President Biden today covers the two counties represented by Mr. Carbajal as well as Monterey County.

Individuals in Merced, Monterey, Sacramento, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Santa Cruz Counties can apply with FEMA the following ways:

  1. Apply online at
  2. Residents may call the application phone number at 1-800-621-3362 (TTY: 800-462-7585).

Rep. Salud Carbajal represents California’s 24th Congressional District, encompassing Santa Barbara County and portions of San Luis Obispo County and Ventura County. He sits on the House Armed Services Committee, Agriculture Committee, and Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.


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