MCF Bill to Strengthen the Disaster System Gets Hearing

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Minnesota grantmakers that are part of MCF's Disaster Philanthropy Working Group, in partnership with Minnesota Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (MN VOAD), developed a bill in 2019 to address a need in our state’s disaster system – volunteer coordination and capacity. Minnesota relies heavily on volunteers and charity to help individuals and families impacted by disaster start the process of recovering. Volunteers are critical to our state's disaster recovery system.

On Thursday, February 13th, the bill received a hearing in the House Public Safety and Criminal Justice Reform Finance and Policy Division at the MN Capitol. This bi-partisan bill (HF 2901/SF 2909) is an investment in our state's disaster volunteer infrastructure. It would provide funding to staff Minnesota VOAD, creating a more reliable and consistent partner for the state and communities impacted by disaster. It would also provide grants to develop more local disaster volunteer capacity spread across the state so that there is the capacity to respond to lower-attention disasters in Minnesota.

MCF member Nancy Fasching of Southwest Initiative Foundation testified on behalf of the bill, along with Ruth Talford of MN VOAD. The hearing went well, and the bill will be considered for inclusion in the supplemental budget this session. MCF will now work to try to secure a hearing in the MN Senate. 

MCF's work to improve the state's disaster system is part of MCF's 2020 Advocacy Agenda

 

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