Obama briefed as Hurricane Arthur nears

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President Obama was briefed on Hurricane Arthur and directed federal officials to prepare for the Category 1 storm, which is expected to hit the Eastern Seaboard over the July Fourth holiday weekend.

Obama has met twice with his Homeland Security adviser Lisa Monaco, on Wednesday and again on Thursday morning, according to White House press secretary Josh Earnest.

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"The president directed his team to ensure that state and local officials in the storm's path have all the support and resources they need to prepare for and respond to any potential impacts," Earnest said. "He'll continue to receive updates as necessary through the weekend."

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) administrator Craig Fugate has also spoken with North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory (R-N.C.) about preparedness efforts.

"As part of our administration's forward-leaning approach to preparing for and responding to disasters, FEMA has deployed a special coordination team to North Carolina and pre-positioned staff in North Carolina and South Carolina's emergency operations centers to work closely and ensure that we're closely integrated with state and local teams," Earnest said.

The National Hurricane Center said Thursday that the storm was packing sustained winds of 90 mph, and warned that the Outer Banks were facing heavy rain and rip currents.

The storm is expected to move up the coast and could hit New England by late Friday.