Walz signs disaster assistance response bill as river levels rise

(ABC 6 News) – As communities across the state prepare for the impact of spring flooding, Governor Tim Walz signed a bill into law strengthening the state’s emergency management and disaster assistance response.

The bill provides $40 million to replenish the state’s Disaster Assistance Contingency Account, which is used to respond to natural disasters. Governor Walz signed the bill alongside bill authors Senator Aric Putnam and Representative Gene Pelowski, Minnesota Department of Public Safety Commissioner Bob Jacobson, Homeland Security and Emergency Management Interim Director Kevin Reed, and Stillwater Mayor Ted Kozlowski.

“While we hope disaster doesn’t strike, we know hope is not a plan. Whether it’s flooding, tornados, or snowstorms, this bill ensures Minnesota is ready to support recovery efforts in local communities across the state,” said Governor Walz. “As communities brace for the crest of spring floods, I am grateful to the legislature for recognizing the urgency of these funds.”

Chapter 26, HF1278, passed unanimously by the state legislature, provides $40 million in fiscal year 2023 to replenish the state’s Disaster Assistance Contingency Account. The funds will be used to respond to natural disasters declared by the federal or state government and can be deployed quickly without legislative action.