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White House approves California’s request for a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration

As wildfires burn throughout the state, letter from Bureau of Automotive Repair informs how to apply for assistance and support

EDITOR’S NOTE: For the latest information on affected areas use this link

Dear BAR Stakeholders:

California continues to battle two of the largest fires in the state’s history, and nearly 600 new fires have been caused by dry lightning strikes in the last week.

On August 22, Governor Gavin Newsom announced that the White House has approved California’s request for a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration to bolster the state’s emergency response to wildfires burning in Northern California and to support impacted residents in Lake, Napa, San Mateo, Santa Cruz, Solano, Sonoma, and Yolo Counties.

A Presidential Major Disaster Declaration helps people in those counties through eligibility for support including crisis counseling, housing and unemployment assistance, and legal services.

People who have sustained losses in the designated areas can now begin applying for assistance by registering with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) online at or by calling 800-621-FEMA (3362) or 800-462-7585 TTY. FEMA is encouraging people to register online whenever possible.

When registering, you will be asked for information, including:

  • Social Security Number (SSN) OR the SSN of a minor child in the household who is a U.S. Citizen, Non-Citizen National or Qualified Alien
  • Annual Household Income
  • Contact Information (phone number, mailing address, email address*, and damaged home address)
  • Insurance Information (coverage, insurance company name, etc.)
  • Bank Account Information (if you are eligible to receive financial assistance, the money can be deposited in your account)

*Note: You must provide an email address if you want to review your registration status online. If you do not provide an email address, you will be required to contact FEMA for any updates to your registration.

People who are undocumented immigrants may be available for resources and services. For more information, visit (English) or (Spanish).

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