NORFOLK -- Following the lead of Gov. Bob McDonnell, Norfolk City Manager Marcus D. Jones signed a local declaration of emergency Friday.

It allows for state and federal assistance as well as possible federal reimbursement for any storm damage.

City officials say they've spent the last couple of days clearing debris from drainage ditches to minimize flooding in low-lying neighborhoods.

Spokeswoman Lori Crouch told the downtown flood gates were tested on the 12th, so officials were deciding whether to test them again.

She also said emergency management officials were preparing for possible shelter needs. Another meeting was scheduled for Friday afternoon to assess conditions and the track of the storm.

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