(St. Paul) – The Minnesota Senate today passed its first bill of the 2020 legislative session, a $30 million appropriation for the state’s Disaster Assistance Contingency Account. The bill, authored by Senate President Jeremy Miller (R-Winona), allows the state to provide fast assistance to help local communities recover from spring flooding, severe thunderstorms or windstorms, tornados, or other natural disasters, without the need for a special legislative session.
“Minnesotans know that no matter where you live, no matter what political party your community supports, no matter how big or small your town, we always have each other’s back when disaster strikes,” said Senate Finance Committee Chairwoman Julie Rosen (R-Vernon Center). “It is one of the things that makes me most proud to call Minnesota home. Replenishing the disaster relief account is one of my top priorities, and I am thrilled we were able to get it done so quickly.”
Since 2014, the Disaster Assistance Contingency Account has been used 40 times to help local communities following natural disasters. Worse-than-expected flooding in the spring of 2019 left the account with a $3 million deficiency. Sen. Miller’s disaster relief bill wipes out that deficiency and replenishes the account in preparation for possible future disasters.