Yesterday, I wrote about how some temporary levees in southeast Iowa have already failed this spring. I think this is a complete failure of government. For all the talk about flood relief, and the millions of dollars that have been allocated for this, that, and everything under the sun, I have a hard time dealing with the fact that some levees were never fixed.
Many Republicans criticized Culver and the Democrats for not having a special session. Most people now agree that the reason for the inaction by Culver and the Democrats was politically motivated. The last thing the Dems wanted to have happen last summer was the voters to see what a mess they made of our state finances right before an election.
Instead, they opted to let Governor Culver stomp his feet and throw a tantrum when either the Feds were not sending money fast enough or, God forbid, they wanted to make sure federal disaster money was going to be spent on its intended purpose.
So I guess I’m not surprised to see that yesterday, Iowa Democrats proposed to do something about preventing flooding, just some 273 days after the flooding began. Rep. Tom Schueller, the Chair of the House Rebuild Iowa and Disaster Recovery Committee, proposed a $100 million recovery package.
They don’t really know yet where they money is going to come from. Either they will to take it from the state reserve funds, which Culver is already dipping into to balance the budget, or, they are open to pulling it out of the Governor’s $750 million bonding proposal.
Here is the list of things they plan to do with the $100 million.
• $20 million for flood prevention
• $12.5 million for home buyouts
• $5 million for day care relocation
• $5 million for nonprofit restoration
• $9.5 million for multifamily housing
• $14 million for storm water drainage
• $15 million for cultural and historical projects
• $6 million for soil and water retention efforts
• $1.5 million in low-interest loans to prevent soil erosion
• $795,500 for an agriculture land management and hydrology study
• $1.3 million for an Iowa Flood Center
• $5 million for parks, green space and recreation repairs
Alright, here is where I begin my rant…
The $20 million they propose for flood prevention is something that should have been discussed during a special session last fall. Now some areas that are starting to rebuild will be flooded again. It’s kind of like putting up the dry wall in a house before you put the roof on.
$5 million for day care relocation, and $5 million for nonprofit restoration? I’m betting they already have relocated. Just a guess on my part, but these are business, and they should be treated just like everyone else. But, I’ll bet dollars to doughnuts that Chet heard some sob story and wanted to throw a little money their way. Plus, these seem a little vague to me.
But the one that really chaps my _____, is the $1.3 million for an Iowa Flood Center. What the heck is that? Is it a museum about the flood? I’m sure the people in Oakville and Wapello would rather have permanent levees than an Iowa Flood Center?
The level of the stupidity on display between Governor Culver and House Democrats is shocking.
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