On Thursday, the Minnesota House of Representatives voted to approve additional funding for the state’s disaster contingency account. This account is critical to making it possible for the state to act quickly when natural disasters strike—providing aid to local communities in the event of a disaster.
The legislation was unanimously approved and puts $10 million into the Disaster Assistance Contingency Account. While $10 million is better than no additional funding, House Republicans attempted to put even more into the account via an amendment offered by Rep. Tony Jurgens.
The Jurgens amendment would have transferred $43 million into Minnesota’s disaster contingency account, $33 million more than what was offered in the underlying bill.
The need for disaster funds will be significant as communities around the state are already dealing with significant flooding while the account currently sits empty. Thanks to record snowfall this winter, even more flooding is expected this spring. Simply put, $10 million is likely not enough to cover all the costs of this spring’s flooding.
In fact, the account is currently is in the red after Minnesota responded with over $11 million in relief to just two flooding events last year in Brainerd and Duluth. Based on the flooding we've seen this spring, including in Jordan, additional funds will almost certainly be needed.
The City of Jordan has already seen significant flooding early this spring so this threat is not theoretical for my community. It is critical we put adequate funding in place now so flood victims can avoid becoming a pawn in end of session budget negotiations. Minnesota communities cannot afford that.
Richard J. Ames Memorial Highway
I was moved and honored to present my bill to honor Dick Ames by renaming a route from Jordan to U.S. Highway 61 near Miesville as the “Richard J. Ames Memorial Highway.” Thank you to the Ames family members who also came to testify and share stories about all the great things Dick did for our community. Watch the presentation here.
Please Contact Me
Many of you have already been in touch to discuss your thoughts on the issues that matter most to you. Thank you for sharing your ideas! Please continue to contact me to discuss any legislation put before the House, or any other matters to which I can be of assistance. You can set up a time to visit me at the Capitol by calling me at 651-296-5185 or contact me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Enjoy your week,