President Obama has declared a disaster in eight Minnesota counties damaged by flooding, unleashing federal funds to help repair millions in damages. June and July storms hit more than 50 of the state’s 87 counties, costing Minnesota an estimated $55-million for flood response and repairs. On Monday, the White House announced it will provide federal disaster funds for Chippewa, Freeborn, Jackson, Murray, Nobles, Pipestone, Renville, and Rock counties. Governor Dayton says he hopes damage assessments for the remaining waterlogged counties are completed by the end of the week to request more federal funding. The Federal Emergency Management Agency reimburses up to 75% of repair costs. Dayton says he’s not sure whether he’ll call a special legislative session to approve any additional state money.