Bush declares disaster area for Kansas counties

WASHINGTON _ President Bush has approved a federal disaster declaration for nine Kansas counties hit by storms in September.

Friday's order clears the way for federal assistance to be provided to local governments in Anderson, Butler, Chase, Cowley, Greenwood, Harper, Harvey, Russell and Sumner counties.

The areas were hit by severe storms, flooding and tornadoes from Sept. 11-17. Gov. Kathleen Sebelius requested the declaration from federal officials.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency said additional designations may be made later if requested by the state, as determined by further damage assessments.