Is Minnesota prepared for a disaster?

At 10, we’re talking about the future of the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

One argument is that states are not prepared enough for disaster because they expect that FEMA will swoop in and save the day if disaster strikes.

William A. Jacobson argues in The New York Times that FEMA should only move in when states working with private contractors can’t handle a disaster.

The most efficient role for the federal government is to fill in where states cannot, for example, where the damage is of such a nature that it is not amenable to state or local solutions. Hurricane damage typically is localized, and requires a street-by-street response which the federal government is ill prepared to provide. A large oil spill, by contrast, is not capable of local relief alone, and that is where federal coordination can be most effective.

Do you think states take advantage of FEMA? Is Minnesota ready for a disaster?

20120620_duluth3_33.jpgA sinkhole opened up at the corner of 1st Street and 7th Avenue East in Duluth during torrential rains and flooding, swallowing this car. (Derek Montgomery for MPR)

–Stephanie Curtis, social media host

  • Greg

    Natural disasters do not read political boundaries and marketing studies. They hit , that’s it. FEMA provides the ability to aggregate resources, knowledge and structured lines of authority and communication. It needs to exist.

    What FEMA and all federal agencies need to change is the assignment of unqualified political appointments into decision making positions. No one should be “appointed” to an agency unless they have categorically applicable skills to the functional role of the agency they will work in.

    Experts leading experts is the goal.

    Rightly or wrongly , Michael Brown is the poster child for wrong guy in the leadership role at a time of crisis. Promote knowledge not power.

  • Jennifer

    Just a little concerned about things like snow tornadoes, and other unusual events as a result of the well you know what climate change.