Thursday, March 20, 1997
Quick action sought
to approve flood aid

President's $2 billion includes Ohio

Gannett News Service

WASHINGTON - President Clinton requested $2 billion in emergency funding Wednesday for victims of winter weather in Ohio, West Virginia and other states.

''I expect Congress to act quickly on this,'' said Rep. Ted Strickland, D-Lucasville, whose district has 12 counties declared disaster areas because of flooding. ''I imagine senators and congressmen from affected states will form a cohesive group to see that this gets done.''

Mr. Strickland said money will be for flood victims in the Midwest, including Ohio. No figures were available for West Virginia. Key elements of the request:

  • $438 million for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for emergency needs out of a requested $541 million. Mr. Clinton also is requesting another $438 million in contingency funding for FEMA, which is still assessing damage in several flood-ravaged states.

  • $15 million for the Federal Highway Administration out of a requested $276 million to repair roads.

  • $50 million for the Army Corps of Engineers, out of a requested $240.7 million, to repair levees and to dredge navigation channels and harbors.

  • $30 million for the Interior Department to repair lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management. Mr. Clinton is requesting $213.4 million for Interior and $147.8 million for the National Park Service for park repairs.

  • $35 million out of a requested $126.1 million for the Agriculture Department for flood prevention, and $35 million in contingency funds for anticipated spring flooding across the nation.