10/01/2005

Think Locally On Relief by Jeb Bush

Ohhh, sibling rivalry! Jeb doesn't want the Posse Commitatus changes that his brother George say are a "must"... I'll get the popcorn to watch the Bush fur fly!!! -- law

Think Locally On Relief

By Jeb Bush

Friday, September 30, 2005; Page A19

In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, Americans are looking to their leaders for answers to the tragedy and reassurances that the mistakes made in the response will not be repeated in their own communities. Congressional hearings on the successes and failures of the relief effort are underway.

As the governor of a state that has been hit by seven hurricanes and two tropical storms in the past 13 months, I can say with certainty that federalizing emergency response to catastrophic events would be a disaster as bad as Hurricane Katrina...

Just as all politics are local, so are all disasters. The most effective response is one that starts at the local level and grows with the support of surrounding communities, the state and then the federal government. The bottom-up approach yields the best and quickest results -- saving lives, protecting property and getting life back to normal as soon as possible. Furthermore, when local and state governments understand and follow emergency plans appropriately, less taxpayer money is needed from the federal government for relief.

Florida's emergency response system, under the direction of Craig Fugate, is second to none. Our team is made up of numerous bodies at all levels of government, including state agencies, the Florida National Guard, first responders, volunteer organizations, private-sector health care organizations, public health agencies and utility companies. Once a storm is forecast for landfall in Florida, all these groups put their disaster response-and-recovery plans into high gear.

Natural disasters are chaotic situations even when a solid response plan is in place. But with proper preparation and planning, it is possible -- as we in Florida have proved -- to restore order, quickly alleviate the suffering of those affected and get on the road to recovery.

yada, yada, yada, Jeb pats himself on the back for 5 more paragraphs...

Think Locally On Relief

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