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Dayton asks for federal aid following June storm

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Gov. Mark Dayton is requesting a federal disaster declaration for 18 counties hit by storms in late June.

Dayton sent a letter to President Barack Obama requesting the federal government reimburse the state for damage and flash flooding that occurred mainly in western, central and southern Minnesota.

The preliminary damage estimate to public property like roads and bridges is $17.8 million. The storms, which occurred between June 20 and June 26, also caused heavy damage to trees and power lines. Dayton's letter says the storm knocked out power to 600,000 homes and businesses at the peak, making it the largest power outage in Minnesota history.

If Obama approves the request, aid would be provided to schools, municipalities and some non-profits to help repair damage. The Federal Emergency Management Agency would fund 75 percent of approved costs. State and local governments would be responsible for the rest.