Columns

Blaine's Bulletin:The Week in Missouri and in Washington

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Washington, May 5, 2017 | comments
Over the last week, our state has seen record-breaking rainfall. Our rivers and creeks are swollen and backroads and interstates alike have either been closed or become impassible. Many Missourians have had to make emergency preparations to protect their property and some have had to evacuate their homes and shutter their businesses.
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Over the last week, our state has seen record-breaking rainfall. Our rivers and creeks are swollen and backroads and interstates alike have either been closed or become impassible. Many Missourians have had to make emergency preparations to protect their property and some have had to evacuate their homes and shutter their businesses.

Our state’s first responders cannot be thanked enough. During the worst of the rain and flooding, these men and women never stopped working. And thank you to all of the volunteers who have been helping alongside the first responders. Please stay alert over the next few days as you drive and pay attention to your surroundings. Once the floodwaters recede, it will be time to determine both the extent of the damage and what resources might be available to those impacted by the storms. My staff and I have been in constant contact with officials at the local, state, and federal levels, so if there is anything that we can do to assist you in the days and weeks to come, please do not hesitate to let us know.

As a senior member and former Chairman of the Housing and Insurance Subcommittee, I’ve met with constituents and stakeholders from across Missouri about the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) over the last several years. It’s a topic that’s not on the front burner for many Members of Congress, but it will always be a top priority for me, because of our district’s geography: the Mississippi River is the eastern border of the 3rd District, the Missouri River runs through the middle of it, and the Lake of the Ozarks sits in its southwestern corner. Storms like this demonstrate the need for us to reform and reauthorize the NFIP, which expires at the end of September. I recently introduced the Taxpayer Exposure Mitigation Act, which would require FEMA to purchase more reinsurance or seek other options in the capital markets in order to put the NFIP on sounder financial footing. In addition, it contains an important provision that would provide for more local involvement in flood mapping.  This is critical, because inaccurate federal flood maps have been a major source of problems for many of our communities.

I also have an update on the Financial CHOICE Act, which I covered in-depth in a recent article. This past week, the House Financial Services Committee successfully took the first step and passed this legislation, the alternative to the failed Dodd-Frank law, out of the committee. Its next stop will be the House floor. The CHOICE Act makes common-sense reforms and delivers more accountability for both Washington and Wall Street, something that the American people have long sought.. It is time to look to the future and a new model of financial opportunity. One that empowers Americans and our community banks and financial institutions.  More information on the CHOICE Act can be found by going to www.financialchoice.gop.

Lastly, my district office recently wrapped up the Congressional Art Competition for 2017. We had over 30 entries, including some from high schools that had not participated before, and really great entries were submitted. Be sure to check my Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter as I highlight the winner and the runners-up in the coming days! 

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2230 Rayburn HOB Washington, DC 20515 (202) 225-2956 tel (202) 225-5712 fax
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2117 Missouri Boulevard Jefferson City, Mo., 65109 (573) 635-7232 tel (573) 635-8347 fax
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113 East Pearce Boulevard Wentzville, Mo., 63385 (636) 327-7055 tel
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516 Jefferson St. Washington, MO 63090 (636) 239-2276 tel (636) 239-0478 fax
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