To qualify for disaster funds, St. Paul and Ramsey County leaders have declared a local state of emergency after the April 28 rock slide that closed part of Wabasha Street in St. Paul.

Mayor Melvin Carter declared a state of emergency May 2, and the St. Paul City Council approved it. The Ramsey County Board's declaration on Tuesday was the next step before the state receives it, said Lisa Hiebert, a spokeswoman for the city.

The city hired Itasca Consulting Group for engineering work at the site of the rock slide, between Plato Boulevard and Humboldt Avenue, and will put together a mitigation plan that could include blasting away part of the bluff to prevent future slides.

"With the survey and assessment work, we don't know what we're going to uncover on that," Hiebert said. "Should we need any further assistance, declaring an emergency allows the city to be responsive."

Ramsey County Board Chairman Jim McDonough signed a local state of emergency declaration on May 4 and the full board approved it Tuesday, according to county spokesman John Siqveland. Emergency management and homeland security staff from the county and state have been in contact with staff from the St. Paul emergency management department, according to Siqveland.

No injuries or damage to private property were reported from the slide. Wabasha Street is closed between Plato Boulevard and Cesar Chavez Street.

Emma Nelson • 612-673-4509