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MO Committee Backs Use Of “Rainy Day Fund” For Disaster Repairs

Brett Blume/AP
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (KMOX/AP) –  They’ve toured the damage sites, spoken with survivors, and now a special state committee is moving on to the next phase in the disaster recovery process…how to pay for it.

Missouri Budget Director Linda Luebbering sits on the Interim Committee on Disaster Recovery.

“The Rainy Day Fund is obviously an option, but it is not the only option,” she said Monday during a meeting of the committee.  “I think as we know more about the extent of the cost we’ll have a better idea of whether or not the Rainy Day Fund is the option we want to choose.”

Speaker Pro Tem Shane Schoeller a Republican from Willard, is the chairman of the committee.

He says use of the Rainy Day Fund along with budget withholdings of about $150 million would be an important sign to Missourians that the state has a plan in place to pay for its share of recovery in the Joplin, bootheel and other areas of the state afflicted by tornadoes and floods.

“Local communities need assurances from us that we’re moving forward as a state to help them,” Schoeller concluded.

Gov. Jay Nixon has called for a special legislative session in September on measures addressing disaster recovery, as well as economic development and finalizing the date of next year’s presidential primary.

The state has responded this year to numerous disasters, including massive flooding on the Missouri and Mississippi rivers, the tornado that killed 159 people in Joplin and other, smaller tornadoes like the one that tore apart large sections of Lambert-St. Louis Airport this spring.

 

Copyright KMOX Radio/The Associated Press

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