Posts Tagged ‘FEMA’

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MINNESOTA DISASTERS DEBATE

August 8, 2012

“I keep hearing Ka-ching! Ka-ching!….”

  -MN HOUSE WAYS AND MEANS CHAIR,  Republican Mary Liz Holberg-Lakeville

Sometimes, all one can do is shake one’s head as you look at the mess Republicans make of their own conflicting policy stands.

United across the country, Republicans want smaller national government, less taxes, and smaller federal budgets.  The rallying cry is LESS Fed  interference…States Rights…We in the states know best; we can take care of ourselves. Throw in a refusal to acknowledge a slow (but moving faster) climate change, and a major weather disaster in Northern Minnesota and what do you have?

…Whining that FEMA is not paying enough to help in the Minnesota disaster!

  • Tell me WHY one should expect MORE money from FEMA than we got in 2007 to cover a larger storm disaster in southern Minnesota;
  • Tell me WHY they should be surprised that their fiscal actions to cut budgets on a national level  should impact us on a state level;
  • And, tell me WHY they are surprised when they are the ones that refused to act on recommendations from the Office of the Legislative Auditor?

As a quick reference, the auditor suggested that we clarify when the state will pay the entire 25% match FEMA requires and when it will expect local governments to split the tab; address the same issues in the Flood Hazard Mitigation Grants; and decide what state help should be made available when FEMA declines to help.

Particularly in view of our current situation, that makes sense to me.  Had our Minnesota Legislature, led by the Republicans, taken the proposed action, we would have an agreed-upon disaster action plan.

Instead, they ignored it.  And now I am MAD.  In my world, it is considered incompetency not to have a clear disaster action plan for every meeting and event produced.  Is it too much to ask the same of our government?

Only when we as the people start holding state and federal legislators accountable for their inaction, will we facilitate change and a way to free ourselves from being victims of this absolute madness!

And being mad, I much more susceptible to the suggestion that just perhaps, the whining is due to discrimination.  We may not be hearing so much of it if the disaster was in Lakeville or Jordon instead of 15 counties and  3 tribal reservations in northern Minnesota.

Whatever, as the STRIB points out this morning, over the last 15 years, we have had 32 weather disasters ranked “severe” that cost the state $488 million…we are expecting that frequency to increase.

So perhaps it is time now for all of us with a common voice to demand responsible actions from our legislators or remove them from office!

 

 

 

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