FEMA initially denied the aid request last month, saying the damages from the storms weren't beyond what the state could fix on its own. Connecticut appealed, arguing it should receive the aid because unlike most states, it does not have county governments or benefit from the revenues they collect.
But FEMA said the damage was within what the combined resources of the state and local governments could handle.
In a statement released Saturday, Rell called the decision "simply unfair" and said many victims "do not have the resources to make their lives whole again."
The state estimated the storm did $4.2 million in damage, including more than $3 million in Bridgeport.