Pine County will be hosting a flood recovery meeting for county residents at the Rutledge Community Center 7 p.m. Thursday, January 17.
In December, Pine County officials met with other local officials to come up with a plan to help those hurt by the June 2012 floods that ravaged northeastern Minnesota, including Pine.
“I am frankly embarrassed,” said County Administrator Dave Minke on the time it has taken for Pine County to come up with a plan for local residents.
“The wheels of government move slowly,” said Commissioner Curt Rossow of Willow River, who noted some people are now camping out in their condemned homes.
At the meeting, there will be information presented on the next step for buyouts. There will also be information on the SBA/Quickstart Loan programs and additional information on buyouts and other places residents can get resources.
Along with Pine County officials, there will also be city and township officials, representatives from the state of Minnesota Homeland Security Emergency Management (HSEM), Lutheran Social Services and Lakes and Pines Community Action.
Pine County has also hired a new flood recovery relief coordinator, Tom Paull. If a local flood victim is unable to attend the meeting next week, Paull can be reached at (218) 343-2448 or Tom.Paull@co.pine.mn.us. He will help people on the buyout program and how to fill out certain paperwork if a person is interested in asking for assistance.
Lutheran Social Services can be reached at (218) 499-9480.
Commissioner Doug Carlson of Sandstone said he hoped the county would look at June 2012 as part of its strategic planning meeting to be held later in January so the county can prepare for the next emergency.