UPDATE: North Mississippi receives disaster declaration

By The Associated Press

JACKSON — President Barack Obama has approved a federal disaster declaration for six northern Mississippi counties hit by severe weather that killed six people early this month.

Gov. Haley Barbour said Friday that the declaration gives residents access to federal government assistance programs in Alcorn, Benton, Lafayette, Prentiss, Tippah and Tishomingo counties.

It also provides federal funding to the governments of Alcorn, Benton, Prentiss, Tippah and Tishomingo counties for emergency protective measures used in the first 72 hours of the storm.

The severe weather system spawned two tornadoes and heavy rain on May 1-2. Several homes and businesses were destroyed or suffered major damage.