Governor Jack Dalrymple and the state’s congressional delegation announced Friday that U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano plans to visit Minot and surrounding areas on Wednesday, July 13, for an aerial tour of flooding and to meet with local, state and federal officials.
“It’s good news that Secretary Napolitano is coming here to see for herself the extent of flood damages along the Mouse River,” Dalrymple said. “I’m anxious to show her just how significant the damages are and to discuss the impacts of other disasters in our state and how important it is for us to receive adequate assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.”
Dalrymple and the state’s congressional delegation are encouraging Napolitano to expand her visit to include a tour of flooding in the Bismarck-Mandan area and in the Devils Lake Basin.
“We’ve been working throughout the flood season to ensure that Secretary Napolitano fully understands the damage caused by flood waters not only in Minot, but in Bismarck-Mandan, Devils Lake, and other communities throughout our state,” Senator Hoeven said. “We’re grateful she has accepted our invitation to visit North Dakota and we will continue working with her to ensure all of our flood-impacted communities have the resources and assistance they need to recover and rebuild.
“Secretary Napolitano is well aware of the challenges facing our friends and neighbors in Minot, as well as Bismarck, Mandan, Devils Lake and other effected communities across the state. She knows that the scope of the devastation in Minot and elsewhere requires an equally significant response from the federal government,” Senator Conrad said. “But no report or photograph has the same impact as seeing the water first hand. That’s why it’s so important that Secretary Napolitano make this stop and meet with those most affected, as well as the volunteers and state and local leaders.”
“As we continue to work together, it is important for Secretary Napolitano to see the devastation first hand, meet with local leaders on the ground, as well as taking the time to visit with those most affected,” Congressman Berg said. “North Dakotans need to know that when the water recedes, we will be there to help, we will be there to clean, and we will be there to ensure a strong recovery.”
About 12,000 Minot residents have been displaced by unprecedented flooding along the Mouse River. The flooding has damaged an estimated 4,100 homes and businesses and the majority of those structures remain inundated. Major flooding also has caused extensive damage to property along the Missouri River where about 900 residences have been evacuated. In the Devils Lake Basin, hundreds of structures are flooded and an estimated 30,000 additional acres of farmland have been swallowed up by the rising lake since this spring.
Source: Office of Governor Dalrymple