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Louisiana gov asks Congress for $2B for flood recovery
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards on Friday appealed to Congress to approve $2 billion in aid for his state        
-1 points by The Detroit News | Hurricane Katrina Federal government of the United States United States United States Congress Flood Tropical cyclone Federal Emergency Management Agency Louisiana
Despite Katrina lessons, flood plan in Louisiana shows gaps
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Eleven years ago, Hurricane Katrina exposed huge gaps in the disaster response plans of Louisiana and the nation.
-1 points by Arizona Daily Star | Louisiana Federal Emergency Management Agency United States Hurricane Katrina Barack Obama Tropical cyclone George W. Bush New Orleans
Agency based in Reisterstown on guard for all types of emergencies in state
On a mild winter afternoon, the State Emergency Operations Center at MEMA, the Maryland Emergency Management Agency, is super quiet. The only signs of activity in the large room, which functions as the nerve center for the state's emergency preparedness activities, are images of traffic and weather...
-2 points by Baltimore Sun | Emergency management Civil defense Emergency service Nuclear weapon Federal Emergency Management Agency Maryland Joint Operations Center Community Emergency Response Team United States
20% of dams in populated areas lack emergency plan
As the nation's 84,000 dams continue to age, a growing number of people downstream are at risk, experts say.         
-2 points by Arizona Republic | Federal government of the United States Northern California U.S. state Emergency management Federal Emergency Management Agency Lake Oroville Dam Emergency evacuation
California wastewater authority mismanaged $32mn in FEMA funds – govt audit
A US government audit has revealed that a California wastewater treatment authority mismanaged millions of dollars in emergency management funds. The agency received the federal money after major flooding led to a ruptured pipeline six years ago. Read Full Article at RT.com
342 points by Russia Today | United States Department of Homeland Security Federal Emergency Management Agency San Bernardino County California Mojave Desert Emergency management agency The Los Angeles Times 2016 The Authority
Investigators cannot determine cause of fire that killed Ohio Township teen
One month after a fire claimed the life of a 15-year-old girl, Allegheny County officials have concluded that the cause of the blaze in Ohio Township will be listed as "undetermined."
1 points by Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | Allegheny County Pennsylvania Laundry Clothes dryer Federal Emergency Management Agency Fire United States Sport utility vehicle Million
High desert water treatment authority mismanaged millions in federal funds, audit says
A wastewater treatment authority that serves large parts of the high desert, including Victorville, Hesperia and Apple Valley, mismanaged millions of dollars in federal emergency management funds, a U.S. audit has found. The Victor Valley Water Reclamation Authority, which received the funds after...
35 points by Los Angeles Times | United States Department of Homeland Security Mojave Desert Federal Emergency Management Agency San Bernardino County California Emergency management agency Sewage treatment Mojave River Victorville California
Hurricane Matthew victims get more time to seek FEMA aid
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - Hurricane Matthew victims in North Carolina have more time to apply for federal disaster assistance. The Federal Emergency Management Agency said in a news release that it has approved a 31-day extension for applications. Residents now have until Jan. 9, 2017, to register with FEMA. The ...
-2 points by The Washington Times | North Carolina United States Business Federal Emergency Management Agency Washington D.C. South Carolina Raleigh North Carolina Hurricane Katrina
Oklahoma Board of Corrections to request $1.65 billion
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - The Oklahoma Board of Corrections has voted to request nearly $1.65 billion for the Department of Corrections next fiscal year - an increase of $1.16 billion over its request for the current year. The department received just less than $485 million for the current year as ...
2 points by The Washington Times | Federal government of the United States Federal Emergency Management Agency Oklahoma Oklahoma City Taxation Fiscal year U.S. state Need
Most of Puerto Rico still in the dark after power plant fire
As of Thursday morning, 131,000 customers had power restored in the wake of Wednesday's blaze.         
2419 points by Arizona Republic | Power outage Failure Puerto Rico Electricity Electric power transmission Electricity generation Federal Emergency Management Agency United States
Updated flood insurance needed for Ohio, nation: Collin O'Mara and Sara Calo (Opinion)
In some states, but not Ohio, private insurers are offering better flood coverage at lower rates than the National Flood Insurance Program, write Collin O'Mara of the National Wildlife Federation and Sara Calo of the Ohio Association of REALTORS®. Collin O'Mara is president and CEO of the National Wildlife FederationCollin O'Mara  A surge of destructive flooding has made the need for flood insurance in Ohio greater than it has ever been. With each passing year, flooding takes its toll on local communities, destroying homes and wildlife habitats throughout the state. Amazingly, Ohio residents essentially have only one option for getting flood insurance coverage. Throughout the state, a majority of home and business owners have been forced to rely on the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) for their flood coverage because it has been the only option to meet mandatory purchase requirements. In some states, however, private insurers are offering better coverage at lower rates than the NFIP because of statewide regulations to loosen restrictions on the marketplace. Since Ohio has not made such changes, private coverage can be purchased from out-of-state providers, but it is often not accepted by financial institutions issuing mortgages because it is not federally backed. Sara Calo is president of the Ohio Association of REALTORSSara Calo  This system is long overdue for an update, so Congress must act to level the playing field and address outdated and arcane regulations so that people across the state and country can have equal access private coverage if they choose. The status quo is unsustainable. Since premiums remain heavily subsidized and haven't kept up with the risk of inflation, the NFIP's overall debt has reached approximately $23 billion. The Flood Insurance Market Parity and Modernization Act (HR 2901), which unanimously passed the U.S. House of Representatives in April, would level the playing field for private insurers to enter the marketplace by clarifying that private policies can be used to meet the federal mandatory purchase requirements. Now it is the U.S. Senate's turn to act on the House legislation. View Cuyahoga County flood maps as updated in 2011 Competition is a vital part of any industry, and flood insurance is no exception. The presence of private insurers in the flood insurance marketplace will lead to more options, better prices and greater efficiencies for hundreds if not thousands of communities across the country. Ohio residents would finally be able to choose the flood coverage that works best for them instead of being restricted to the one-size-fits-all policies of the NFIP. Private insurers would also have more flexibility than a government-run program to provide additional coverages and price policies more accurately based on a property's exposure to flooding. This would lead to lower rates for many policyholders as well as discourage risky development in regions that experience frequent floods. In fact, current insurers writing private flood coverage are already targeting high-risk zones to offer better coverage at a lower rate. Just as importantly, HR 2901 would bring some desperately needed relief to the NFIP, which has struggled to remain solvent after major payouts from Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy. A 2015 GAO report found that at its current pace, the federal flood-insurance program, which is managed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, would be unable to repay its debt within a reasonable time frame, if ever. To avoid additional expensive taxpayer bailouts, it is necessary for the NFIP to reduce its exposure to risk by sharing some of the burden with other insurers. Reducing its risk would enable the NFIP to better serve policyholders and ensure that the program will still be around for future generations. Ohio's leaders have recognized the state's susceptibility to flooding: Eighty-six of the state's 88 counties voluntarily participate in the NFIP to manage their floodplains. According to FEMA, from October 2014 to September 2015, the NFIP paid out more than $7 million in claims to Ohio policyholders. Though that number is significant, states such as Florida, Texas and Alabama raked in $50 million to $115 million each. The threat from floods will only get worse in the coming years, making it imperative to give Ohio consumers access to flood insurance - whether it's from the NFIP or the private market - so they can bounce back quickly in the wake of a storm. The development of a private flood insurance marketplace is one of several reforms that would strengthen the NFIP and ensure its viability. In 2017, the program needs to be reauthorized and reformed, so Congress must act to avoid another series of short-term extensions and shutdowns that will only create uncertainty in real estate and related markets. The federal government also needs to make resiliency and mitigation efforts a greater priority, both within and outside of the NFIP. Strengthening infrastructure and helping homeowners take preventative measures will minimize the damage when storms hit and reduce the costs of post-disaster recovery. Communities can also invest in natural systems that restore the local ecology and help reduce flooding risks long-term. By restoring natural watersheds and other wildlife habitats that act as natural flood barriers, communities will have more of a buffer for future flooding and increased wildlife habitats nearby during the times of year when floods don't threaten Ohioans. 2012: Cleveland-area watershed restoration projects get $1.7 million in federal funding Another mitigation measure that would give consumers a clear picture of their vulnerability to flooding is updating flood maps using modern technology. Accurate maps would also ensure that flood insurance rates reflect the true risk that a property faces and require fewer homeowners to file expensive appeals. As the country braces for the rest of this year's hurricane season, the U.S. Senate needs to pass this common-sense and much-needed legislation to bring better flood coverage to Ohio residents and protect taxpayers from taking on the NFIP's crushing debt. Collin O'Mara is president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation and a member of the SmarterSafer.org coalition. Sara Calo is president of the Ohio Association of REALTORS(r). ### Have something to say about this topic? Use the comments to share your thoughts, and stay informed when readers reply to your comments by using the Notification Settings (in blue) just below.
7 points by The Plain Dealer | Insurance Federal Emergency Management Agency National Flood Insurance Program Flood National Wildlife Federation Flood insurance Storm surge Dam
Science Cafe Concord on Tuesday discusses ‘Coping with Climate Change’
Let’s say you’re a civil engineer about to build a big, taxpayer-funded something or other. You don’t want to spend more than you should, but also don’t want to be rebuilding everything in five years.No problem. Finding that balance is standard practice for engineers.Now add one more thing: Increasi...
17 points by Concord Monitor | Civil engineering Federal Emergency Management Agency Want Weather Engineer Café WANT Floodplain
Here’s how you got a mobile alert on the Chelsea bomb suspect
NEW YORK — Many people in the New York City area were alerted Monday morning to a screeching, buzzing message about a man wanted in connection with explosions in the area over the weekend. A Saturday explosion in Manhattan injured 29 people. Other devices were found in the New York City area but caused no...
7 points by New York Post | New York City Mobile phone NBC Federal Emergency Management Agency Federal Communications Commission New Jersey Emergency management agency New York
$250K grant to help with Wilkinson County flood recovery
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - State and federal officials say a $250,000 grant will help people in southwestern Mississippi repair homes damaged by flooding in mid-August. Three homes were destroyed, 23 had major damage and 58 others had minor damage in Wilkinson County. Most were in the town of Crosby. The ...
-1 points by The Washington Times | Louisiana Hurricane Katrina Mississippi Federal Emergency Management Agency United States Tropical cyclone New Orleans Michael D. Brown