Locals named to Missouri commission to study disaster recovery

Friday, July 13, 2012

Cape Girardeau native Lt. Gov Peter Kinder will lead a commission that includes Southeast Missouri lawmakers to study disaster response.

Kinder, a Republican, was appointed by House Speaker Steven Tilley as chairman of a commission that will spend several months "assessing the state's ongoing disaster recovery efforts" and the level of preparation of state and local government for future disasters, according to a news release from the Missouri House of Representatives communication office.

"Last year was extremely difficult for Missouri with the tornadoes that hit Joplin and other parts of the state and the flooding that devastated so much of our farmland," Tilley, R-Perryville, said in the news release. "We've seen communities rally together during the recovery period and it has been inspiring to watch. However, we need to make a detailed assessment of the role state and local government have played in this process to determine whether they have provided the best possible service to the people of the state. The disasters of 2011 exposed some of the weaknesses in the state's plan. We need to learn from those lessons and work together to make certain future disasters are handled in the most efficient and effective way possible."

Tilley named House Speaker Pro Tem Shane Schoeller, R-Willard, to serve as vice chairman of the commission.

The commission has been asked to submit a report of its findings Dec. 31.

Local lawmakers on the bipartisan commission are Rep. Shelley Keeney, R-Marble Hill, and Rep. Steve Hodges, D-East Prairie. The panel is made up of Kinder, Schoeller, five other representatives and four citizen members.

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