Okla. Lawmaker Seeks to Reserve Extra Funds for Storm Relief

January 22, 2007

Oklahoma State Rep. George Faught says he will seek to set aside at least $10 million in “Rainy Day” spillover funds from last year to help pay recovery costs from the past week’s ice storm that has blanketed much of the state, the Oklahoma House of Representatives announced.

The exact dollar amount of aid required to assist Oklahomans affected by the ice storm remains to be determined by FEMA officials.

Following the ice storms that hit the state in 2000, a $15 million bill for recovery efforts went unpaid for six years.

Faught says state officials must make sure they don’t repeat that mistake again this time.

“Oklahomans across the state have been hit hard by these storms, including in my own community. Many lost power and utilities, some have been driven out of their homes, and others have lost their lives,” stated Faught (R-Muskogee). “We must do everything we can to help in this effort, while making sure we pay our bills responsibly and on time.”

As of Jan. 19, the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management (OEM) reported that about 64,000 Oklahomans electric customers were still without power as a result of ice storms that began hitting the state last week.

“Thankfully, Oklahoma has quality men and women on the ground, as we speak, getting things back in order,” said Faught. “We owe our emergency teams and our utility workers a great deal of gratitude for their hard work in this trying situation.”

Source: Oklahoma House of Representatives

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