The Washington Times - September 20, 2011, 04:46PM

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has requested federal disaster assistance for Louisa County in the wake of a 5.8 magnitude earthquake that hit Aug. 23 and was centered in Mineral, Va.

“The historic earthquake — felt by millions along the east coast — was centered in Louisa County, and its impact on our citizens cannot be measured in just dollars and cents,” Mr. McDonnell said. “Family life in so many communities has been disrupted, with homes destroyed and children unable to attend their schools because of the destruction. Even today the full extent of the impact is unknown as new damage continues to be discovered and additional aftershocks make existing damage worse.”

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The federal government’s Individual Assistance program makes funding available for homeowners and renters through grants and low-interest loans, as well as disaster housing assistance. The governor also requested disaster unemployment assistance, legal services and crisis counseling for Louisa County, and Hazard Mitigation Assistance for all Virginia localities.

Earlier this month, President Obama granted Virginia’s request for disaster assistance for 22 cities and counties to cover costs of damage to the state from Hurricane Irene, which killed three people and caused widespread flooding and damage, notably in the Huntington community in Fairfax County, among other places.