Minn. opens inter-agency flood information centerby Dan Olson, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — State officials on Thursday opened the emergency operations center in St. Paul which will collect and dispense flood information for the entire state.
Kris Eide, director of the Homeland Security and Emergency Management Division of the Minnesota Department of Public Safety, said as many as 50 of Minnesota's 87 counties may be affected by flooding this spring.
Eide said more than a dozen state and regional agencies have staff at the center.
"The state agencies coordinate our response activities along with the volunteer agencies [and] federal partners to make sure that our local units of government get the resources they need to fight this flood," Eide said.
Wade Setter, Eide's deputy, said next week the center will also include staff from the Federal Emergency Management Administration.
"The reason we do it in the state emergency operations center is we can walk across the room and talk to whatever counterpart from our partner agencies that we need rather than trying to track somebody down by phone or back at their agency office," Setter said.
Weather forecasters say immediate flooding concerns have been pushed back by colder weather.