Helping Minnesota communities

To the editor:

On Monday, Sept. 9, the Legislature met in St. Paul for a special session to address disaster relief. Eighteen counties were covered by a federal disaster declaration and were hit by severe storms, high winds and flooding between June 20 and 26. They include Benton, Big Stone, Douglas, Faribault, Fillmore, Freeborn, Grant, Hennepin, Houston, McLeod, Morrison, Pope, Sibley, Stearns, Stevens, Swift, Traverse and Wilkin.

I’m glad we came together to provide disaster relief. We have a rich tradition of supporting Minnesota communities.

The total damage estimate for Minnesota from the storm is $17,880,840.

A federal disaster declaration paved the way for federal aid for recovery and rebuilding efforts.

However, the federal aid must be partly matched by a $4.5 million state contribution, which requires legislative authorization.

These funds will be available to local governments for their emergency work including repair or replacement of facilities damaged in the storms, debris removal, protective measures and repair of roads, bridges and water control facilities.

Funds will be limited to public and utility infrastructure and no individual assistance has been requested or authorized.

State senator, District 56, which includes Burnsville, Lakeville, Savage