REFILE-Obama declares parts of Texas disaster area due to flooding

Fri Dec 20, 2013 3:11pm EST

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AUSTIN, Texas Dec 20 (Reuters) - U.S. President Barack Obama on Friday declared parts of Texas disaster areas due to devastating floods on Oct. 31 and Nov. 1 that killed six people and caused at least $50 million in damage.

The move opened up federal relief funding to help pay for the damage caused by flooding in areas of Austin and central Texas that wiped out bridges, destroyed hundreds of homes and ripped apart roads.

Obama "ordered federal aid to supplement state and local recovery efforts in the area affected by severe storms and flooding," the White House said in a statement.

Texas Governor Rick Perry last week asked Obama to make the declaration for three counties.

Perry said in a letter to the president: "Flooding caused widespread damage to homes, businesses and public infrastructure across the state, resulting in the need for significant debris removal operations, which continue today." (Reporting by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Scott Malone and Jonathan Oatis)

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