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      Upper Michigan representatives push for emergency declaration

      The Upper Peninsula may be one step closer to a declaration of a State of Emergency.

      State Representative John Kivela welcomed the director of the Emergency Management and Homeland Security Division.

      Kivela showed the director around municipalities who've been struggling with freezing pipes and budget woes this winter. Initially, Governor Rick Snyder denied the request for a State of Emergency to be declared in the U.P., but legislators like Kivela are trying to change that.

      Kivela says the impact from this winter's freeze could be more severe than expected.

      "Republic shared today that their water expenses are 10 years' worth of operating budgets, that's the amount, it's going to be devastating," said Kivela. "If we don't get help for these communities they literally will be bankrupt."

      A declaration of a State of Emergency would put the Upper Peninsula in line for federal aid money.