EOC Directors Lobby Lawmakers

Oklahoma City, OK – Emergency managers visit Capitol

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) Dozens of emergency management professionals want state lawmakers to support their disaster response efforts.

About 100 emergency managers from across the state were at the state Capitol Tuesday to emphasize the need for state disaster relief funds.

Federal disaster declarations authorize the Federal Emergency Management Agency to pay 75 percent of the recovery costs borne by state and local governments for disaster recovery. The state is obligated to pay 12.5 percent and local governments pay the rest.

But legislative appropriations to the state's Emergency Fund, which pays the state's portion of disaster recovery costs, have not kept up in recent years.

Oklahoma County emergency management director David Barnes says Oklahoma is third in the nation in federal disaster declarations behind California and Texas.