Tuesday, August 28, 2007
Sacramento, CA - On the second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, Congresswoman Doris Matsui (CA-5) recalls the tragic mistakes that led to the devastation of the Gulf Coast and highlights the needs of the Sacramento region. Matsui has taken significant steps to strengthen flood protection for the Sacramento area, including several key legislative initiatives.
“Tragedies such as Hurricane Katrina emphasize more than ever the shortcomings of our own protection. We must be constantly vigilant to make sure that our community is safe and secure, and I will continue to work to make progress for our increased flood protection,” said Matsui.
Since Katrina, Congresswoman Matsui has diligently fought to make Sacramento’s flood protection a matter of national significance and bring federal funding to the region. During the past two years, Matsui has:
· Secured a $683 million authorization for the Folsom Dam Joint Federal Project in the Water Resources Development Act of 2007, a crucial project in securing 240-year flood protection for the region
· Secured $30.4 million for emergency levee repair along the Sacramento River and South Sacramento Streams Group in the FY 06 Hurricane Katrina Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Bill.
· Secured $110 million for Sacramento Flood Protection in the FY 07 Continuing Resolution funding. These funds were used for long-term upgrades to the levees along the American River, Sacramento River and South Sacramento Streams Group.
· Secured $71.2 million in the FY 08 House Energy and Water Appropriations bill. Funds will be used to continue the necessary upgrades along the American River, Sacramento River and South Sacramento Streams Group’s levees.
· Secured National Priority status for the Sacramento River Watershed in the 2007 Farm Bill, allowing the region to compete for funding and the establishment of an advisory coalition of interested stakeholders
· Introduced legislation to increase outreach efforts and encourage citizens to participate in the National Flood Insurance Program and reduce the flood risk for the Sacramento region
Furthermore, Matsui will continue to address this crucial challenge by introducing legislation this fall to improve building codes, something that people rely upon to maintain their safety in the event of a disaster. Actively-enforced building codes promote a consistent level of the durability of buildings, both commercial and residential.
“When it comes right down to it, mother nature will have her way. We must take proactive, thoughtful steps to protect our community and bolster our flood protection systems. As we have sadly learned through the mistakes made by the current Administration, we cannot allow our infrastructure, flood control systems, or emergency response systems to languish. I will continue to make progress in these areas,” said Matsui.