Gov. Nixon announces $1.2 million in disaster preparation funds

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COLUMBIA - Governor Jay Nixon announced Monday that $1.2 million is available to assist in disaster preparation and relief. The money will go to the Missouri Association of Councils of Government and will fund three projects which will aid Missouri communities in responding to disasters.

According to a press release from the governor's office, this is how the funds will be used across the state:

  • $935,000 to help Missouri's 19 regional planning commissions "assess critical infrastructure and key resources, and design mitigation plans to strengthen vital infrastructure"
  • $191,000 to increase disaster response efficiency by "creating a statewide asset inventory of deployable resources." This will allow neighboring communities to share access to disaster relief resources  
  • $50,000 to develop "disaster recovery systems in local communities, including enabling local leaders to plan for rebuilding, business retention and public works projects following a disaster"

Scott Olsen, the interim emergency management director for Boone County, said most of the funds being used for planning will allow local commissions to meet on a regular basis to develop plans for possible disasters.

"We do a lot of pre-planning now, but this adds more money to a lot of those activities," Olsen said. "Most recently, Boone County updated its mitigation plan to determine what our risks here in Boone County are and how we can mitigate them."

Olsen said Boone County has to be prepared for a variety of natural disasters.

"We plan for everything," Olsen said. "Tornados, snow storms, ice storms, flooding, and then also earth quake planning."

Olsen said he thinks the new funds will have an impact on disaster preparation and response.

"It can only help in that planning process to give them more funding to complete the planning they do," Olsen said. "I know it will have an impact."

The new disaster grant funding is being administered by the Missouri Department of Economic Development.