The San Bruno City Council held a meeting tonight to adopt a resolution continuing a local state of emergency following the Sept. 9 PG&E gas pipeline explosion in the city’s Crestmoor Canyon neighborhood and gave the community a brief update regarding ongoing recovery efforts.
City Manager Connie Jackson said that the “need for ongoing emergency services had not yet abated,” and recommended that the City Council vote to continue a declaration of local emergency in the wake of the explosion and fire that destroyed at least 37 homes and killed eight people.
The City Council unanimously adopted the resolution.
Jackson also updated the council and a half-dozen community members in attendance on the status of appealing the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s decision to deny additional funds to help the city and state pay for mounting costs of responding to the explosion and cleaning up after it.
A request for a federal disaster declaration by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger was denied last month, and the governor’s office is in the process of appealing FEMA’s denial, Jackson said.
“I am not yet aware if an actual appeal has been submitted,” Jackson said. “It was in draft form at the end of last week.”
City councilman Ken Ibarra took a moment to thank the many donors from around the U.S. who have sent money to the city to help with its recovery efforts.
“We are taking in thousands of dollars in donations from throughout the country,” he said.
San Bruno Mayor Jim Ruane said the region’s representatives in Congress expressed their support for the appeal when he testified before a U.S. Senate subcommittee regarding the disaster on Oct. 2.
“It’s still a heartbreaking situation, Ruane said. “Hopefully, the appeal will get in very shortly.”
The disaster has so far caused an estimated $50 million in damage, according to the mayor’s office.
Chris Cooney, Bay City News