Minnesota Lawmakers, Governor Reach Agreement on Flood Legislation

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Minnesota State Rep. Kory Kath, chief author of the flood recovery legislation in the state House, said agreement has been reached between Governor Tim Pawlenty and lawmakers on the final components of the flood recovery bill that will be considered in the upcoming special session. Kath said the agreement was reached with strong bipartisan cooperation and commitment by all parties.

“The members of the committee were very focused on both offering immediate relief to those communities that sustained damage through the recent floods, and to putting in place prevention efforts for the future,” said Kath. “I am especially pleased we included $10
million in Reinvest in Minnesota (RIM) funding, which brings with it a
60-75% federal match for flood mitigation.”

The final package includes funding for local and township roads, loans for individuals who were impacted, Minnesota Investment Fund grants for local businesses, and a layer of accountability to ensure the funds are responsibly spent and accounted for.

Minnesota state Senator Ann Lynch (DFL-Rochester) was the bill’s chief author in the senate. She said: “I am pleased to announce that an agreement has been reached on disaster relief legislation that will help our communities repair damage to homes, businesses, local roads and bridges throughout southeast Minnesota and the Wadena area. We have been working with the various state agencies and the Governor’s office to craft a package of funding from various sources to help fill the funding gaps once federal relief and insurance dollars are calculated. With a Minnesota winter fast approaching, the timing of this legislation is critical.”

Jacob Wheeler

In addition to shooting videos for The UpTake, Jacob Wheeler is a contributing editor at the progressive political magazine In These Times, publishes the Glen Arbor Sun in his native Michigan, and authored "Between Light and Shadow," a recent book about the Guatemalan adoption industry. Wheeler's stories have appeared in such magazines as the Utne Reader, Earth Island Journal, Rotarian and Teaching Tolerance magazine, and newspapers including the San Francisco Chronicle and Christian Science Monitor. He speaks fluent Spanish, German and Danish.

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