Governor Gavin Newsom on Friday was able to get President Trump to reverse course and approve California's request for a Major Disaster Declaration to help pay for the state's response to wildfires in Fresno, Los Angeles, Madera, Mendocino, San Bernardino, San Diego, and Siskiyou counties.
"Just got off the phone with President Trump who has approved our Major Disaster Declaration request. Grateful for his quick response," said Governor Newsom.
A Presidential Major Disaster Declaration ensures the cost of responding to emergencies is shared by the state and federal governments, including crisis counseling, housing, unemployment assistance, and legal services.
Earlier the Trump administration reportedly rejected the request without issuing a reason for the decision. That despite the fact that wildfires have scorched a combined 1.8 million acres, destroyed thousands of structures, and they've left at least three people dead. The denial also followed Trump's repeated criticism of forest management in California.