California Responds to Louisiana’s Call for Recovery Assistance
SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr. has directed the California Emergency Management Agency (Cal EMA) to send personnel with specialized technical skills to Louisiana to help those impacted recover from the effects of Hurricane Isaac. Three employees from Cal EMA and one from Department of General Services (DGS) with IT and telecommunications expertise are traveling to the Baton Rouge area today to setup computer banks that will enable displaced survivors to apply for various types of assistance.
The team from California will be working for the next 14 days setting up these systems in nine parishes in the region hit hardest by Isaac.
“Even though Isaac has passed, the effects will be felt for a long time by those who were forced from their homes by damaging winds and flooding,” said Cal EMA Secretary Mark Ghilarducci. “California knows all to well the impact of disasters on people’s lives and the importance of focusing on the long-term needs of those struggling to recover.”
Uncomfortably high temperatures above 100 degrees continue in much of Louisiana as thousands remain displaced, relying on dozens of open shelters for food, clothing and assistance. Local, state and federal officials are now focused on long term recovery efforts and providing those impacted with greater access to services and assistance.
The deployment of California’s team came at the request of the Louisiana Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness – who will reimburse California for personnel, travel and other costs. They requested personnel with experience in a variety of disciplines including PC LAN, mobile satellite systems, data configuration and support switches, laptop support, Metro E Connections, T-1 Lines and DSL wireless networks.
Louisiana’s request came through a special system setup for state-to-state requests for help. Requests such as this are facilitated through the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC). This compact offers assistance during governor-declared states of emergency through a responsive, straightforward system that allows states to send personnel, equipment and commodities to help disaster relief efforts in other states.
Benefits to deploying resources through EMAC allows credentials, licenses and certifications be honored across state lines and leverages federal grant dollars for reimbursement purposes, both of which assist in eliminating a level of bureaucracy that could significantly delay response time.
For more information:
California Emergency Management Agency
Federal Emergency Management Agency
Emergency Management Assistance Compact
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association
American Red Cross