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(WASHINGTON) — President Obama declared a major disaster in Mississippi on Wednesday after tornadoes and severe storms destroyed homes and claimed the lives of at least nine residents.

Upon signing the declaration, Obama makes federal funding available to affected individuals in seven counties: Itawamba, Lee, Lowndes, Madison, Rankin, Wayne, and Winston. Federal aid will assist in state and local recovery efforts.

Funding will go toward relief actions such as temporary housing, home repairs, and low-cost loans to cover uninsured property losses.

More counties and additional forms of assistance may be designated following damage surveys by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

Residents in the targeted counties can apply for aid by registering online at DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA(3362).

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