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Gov. Tim Walz announced a funding proposal that would replenish the state’s Disaster Assistance Contingency Account. He’s asking lawmakers to approve $30 million dollars to prevent the account from being exhausted leading into the active spring and summer severe weather season. The reimbursement funds provide emergency assistance to Minnesota communities after a state-declared emergency or disaster.Last session, the Minnesota Legislature funded the Disaster Assistance Contingency Account with enough dollars to account for the state’s 25-percent share of FEMA’s spring 2019 flooding assessments, as well as additional state-declared emergencies. But in January, Minnesota was informed that FEMA underestimated the cost of recovery and nearly doubled their assessment. That means, the Disaster Assistance Contingency Account will soon be depleted.
DPS Commissioner John Harrington recently addressed more than 400 emergency management personnel during the 55th Annual Governor’s HSEM Conference. In his speech, Commissioner Harrington highlighted the around-the-clock work they do to keep Minnesotans safe before, during and after an emergency. This includes the increased awareness of flood insurance, keeping our houses of worship secure, and ensuring the safety of our schools. He also stressed the need for a new State Emergency Operations Center, a part of Gov. Tim Walz’s bonding proposal currently under consideration in the legislature.
More than 400 emergency managers and public safety personnel from around the state are attending the 2020 Governor’s Homeland Security and Emergency Management Conference. The focus of this year’s event is One Minnesota—which highlights the local, state, and federal partnerships. Participants are attending multiple training sessions to learn current best practices in emergency management and preparedness.
FEMA Region V Administrator James Joseph addressed Minnesota’s two federal disaster declarations which could result in an estimated $81 million in disaster assistance to help Minnesota communities recover. He also encouraged emergency managers to teach preparedness concepts to children through the Student Tools for Emergency Preparedness (STEP) program and the FEMA Youth Preparedness Council.
When disaster strikes, Minnesotans depend on the state and its resources to effectively and efficiently respond and recover. That’s why Gov. Tim Walz is recommending $29.545 million as part of his bonding package to acquire land, design, develop, construct, and equip a new State Emergency Operations Center and Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEM) office.
Over the past two years, HSEM and its public safety partners have responded to 18 state disaster declarations and 6 federal disaster declarations across Minnesota. Having an adequate facility to coordinate this response and recovery work is essential to ensuring the safety of all Minnesotans in an emergency.
Visit the governor's Build One MN page to learn more about the bonding packages and the proposal for the new State Emergency Operations.