The Interim Committee on Disaster Recovery will be visiting and holding hearings in Joplin, Sedalia and Sikeston over the next two weeks. The Committee Chair, Speaker Pro Tem Shane Schoeller, says the committee needs to figure out how much money and what services the local governments will need to rebuild.
He says there are more than 50 counties that have been declared federal disaster areas, and so the federal government will be helping with some of the costs, but he says 25 percent will be left up to the State to pay.
Schoeller says there’s 253 million dollars in the state’s rainy day fund, but in order to use it, they’d need to get approval from the rest of the legislature. The legislature would have to vote to come into a special session and then vote to use the money, which would need to be paid back over three consecutive years at a one percent interest rate.
He says there’s a possibility the committee will add northwest Missouri and St. Louis to the list of places they’ll visit because of the flooding and the tornado that hit the northern part of St. Louis, including Lambert International Airport.
Schoeller says they are partnering with businesses as well as local governments so that people remain employed despite the disasters.