Rep. Peters Reintroduces Bill to Strengthen Community Disaster Preparedness
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Recently, Congressman Scott Peters (CA-52) reintroduced legislation to help communities better prepare for disasters. H.R. 2227, the bipartisan “Strengthening the Resiliency of Our Nation on the Ground (STRONG) Act” gives state and local entities access to information needed to prepare, plan for, and recover from extreme weather events such as catastrophic wildfires that have devastated San Diego communities in the past.
“Building up community resiliency will save lives and save money; we know that for every dollar invested in preparedness and resiliency, we save four dollars in restoration. Not to mention the lives that could be saved, something we cannot put a dollar value on,” Rep. Peters said. “Ensuring the we are better able to withstand extreme weather events is not a partisan issue, and we must be focused on equipping states and localities with the tools they need both in advance and in the aftermath of natural disasters.”
“The STRONG Act streamlines disaster relief efforts and increases coordination among state, local, and private and public sector entities,” said Rep. Jim Renacci (OH-16). “By providing state and local governments with the tools they need, the STRONG Act will strengthen our preparation and response to natural disasters while also cutting costs in the long-run. It’s commonsense to bolster communication across all channels, and that’s why I’m proud to support it. ”
At introduction, the STRONG Act had 17 cosponsors, and support from 25 organizations including the Sierra Club, National Wildlife Federation, and the American Sustainable Business Council.
According to the Center for American Progress, over the last 4 years the federal government has spent more than $136 billion on relief for hurricanes, tornadoes, droughts, wildfires, and other weather related incidents. The STRONG Act, which makes communities more resilient to disasters through the creation of an information clearinghouse for state and local use, will save taxpayer money and save lives.
Bryan Koon, President of the National Emergency Management Association, said, “On behalf of the National Emergency Management Association (NEMA), I am pleased to offer our support for the ‘Strengthening the Resiliency of Our Nation on the Ground’ or STRONG Act. We appreciate Congressman Peters’ commitment to long term resiliency. As recovery from disasters continues to be a critical challenge faced by many communities across the country, we look forward to the dialogue this bill will certainly encourage.”
Keith Seitter, Executive Director of the American Meteorological Society, stated the following in support of the STRONG Act, “The AMS strongly supports legislative efforts that will increase the resiliency of our nation to natural hazards of all types. I commend Congressman Peters for his ongoing efforts to improve the nation’s resiliency to natural hazards.”