Dayton talks storm relief in southwestern Minnesota

Courtesy Josh Malchow, city of Slayton

Dayton heads back out to survey flood damage

Governor says there is state aid available for all

July 07, 2018 - 8:52 am
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Governor Dayton heads back out to southwest Minnesota on Monday to get another first-hand look at flood damage from this month's severe storms.

He's scheduled to visit Windom, Jackson, and Blue Earth.

Senator Amy Klobuchar toured flooded areas of southwestern Minnesota on Sunday.

She visited Tracy, Windom, and New Ulm, along with Congressman Colin Peterson, who was in Walnut Grove late last week.

"There are some things that are available that we put into the farm bill," Peterson told local leaders. "They would fit into the scenario down here."

Not all of the Minnesota counties under Governor Dayton's state emergency declaration are expected to receive federal funds for cleanup and rebuilding.

But the governor, who is expected to travel to Windom on Monday, does say there will be emergency aid available from the state.

Dayton on July 5 declared an emergency in 36 counties and the Red Lake reservation following severe storms that damaged property and led to flooding.

"I'm estimating about 28 of those will qualify for FEMA," said  Dayton during a stop Friday in Walnut Grove, one of the communities hit hard by the storms.

"We also have a state emergency fund, so counties that don't qualify under FEMA standards usually will qualify for the state," he said. 

Dayton flew into the storm-damaged area, getting a good look at how bad off communities are.

"We saw a lot of standing water, fields that were totally under water. It's a catastrophe," he said.

Community leaders throughout Minnesota were appreciative of the governor's visit, and the availability of funds for recovery efforts.

"We were pumping manholes, making sure our sanitary sewer system didn't get overwhelmed," said Slayton city administrator Josh Malchow.  "We're faring pretty well. Everyone's saying the same thing, that they've never seen it this bad. Ever."

There are no injuries or deaths in the state that are being blamed on the severe storms.

After all that rain, the immediate forecast for much of Minnesota appears dry.

"Hopefully dry weather will continue," said Dayton.