SAINT PAUL – Rep. Dean Urdahl (R-Grove City) expressed his gratitude to the legislature and the Governor for coming together to provide meaningful relief to flood victims.
After a recent visit to flood stricken southeastern Minnesota, Rep. Urdahl expressed his concern about the overall devastation and the lack of support for businesses. “In Rushford 58 out of 70 businesses were destroyed,” stated Urdahl back on September 6. “We need to figure out a way to get them back on their feet.” With no federal assistance for to do this, Rep. Urdahl was pleased this was addressed in the special session.
Rep. Urdahl, who was unable to attend the special session due to a previously scheduled international trip, expressed his disappointment of being unable to be present for the special session. However, he stressed the need for his colleagues to provide relief funds. “The Governor's emergency powers did not go far enough or fast enough to help many people,” Urdahl remarked, “especially the many business owners who were in danger of permanently closing.” He pointed out the devastating effect this would have had on the economy of southeastern Minnesota.
The nearly $150 million package is dedicated to flood disaster relief in Winona, Wabasha, Dodge, Fillmore, Houston, Olmsted and Steele counties – which have all been declared federal disaster areas. Much of this funding will be used to:
• Provide relief to home and business owners impacted by the flood
• Replace and rehabilitate damaged bridges and highways
• Remove debris
• Repair and replace storm sewers and wastewater plants
“Showing Minnesotans the government can work for the people in a time of disaster is important,” Urdahl said. “I only wish I could have been there to cast my vote in favor of the bill.”